Hymns That Are Important to Us not only feature hymns that are important to country music duo Joey + Rory Feek, but it's also going to be their last record together. Joey Feek is currently suffering Stage IV cervical cancer and she's already close to seeing the Lord. Yet, the couple are pressing on to see the release of their final hymns CD on Valentine's Day.
"This is the last record that Joey and I will ever get to make and the last songs we'll ever get to sing together," Rory Feek says. "I have no desire to go on singing or performing without her."
These 12 new renderings of hymns were recorded over the summer just after Joey Feek's first surgery. "I think Joey wants to capture the words and music of her childhood. The music that she goes to when she needs comfort. The music that makes this beautiful, tragic, crazy life somehow make sense," Rory Feek says. "I think she wants to capture this music so we can take it home with us. All of us. And have it forever."
The songs were recorded in whatever location Joey was comfortable in. Some were recorded in hotel rooms, their house, and wherever and whenever she felt up to singing. "Joey was weak, and it was difficult for her, but she was determined," Rory Feek says. "This record means so much to her. It is the songs that are the most important to her."
The CD comes in two formats. The regular pack comprises of just 12 hymns, while the Cracker Barrell edition has one additional song "When I'm Gone." A song Rory requested Cracker Barrell to include. "When I'm Gone," is not a new song, but one that has become especially important - and personal - to Joey + Rory during Joey Feek's cancer fight. The tune was originally included on their third album, His + Hers, and is the story of a wife telling her husband that he'll be okay when she's gone.
"I was devastated, absolutely devastated when I heard it and what it meant and coming from the person who is leaving their loved one," Joey Feek says of the song. "That concept was just something that I had never heard or thought of before, and it really struck me."
Joey + Rory, Hymns That Are Important to Us Track Listing:
1. "Take My Hand, Precious Lord"
2. "I Surrender All"
3. "He Touched Me"
4. "Softly and Tenderly"
5. "Jesus Loves Me"
6. "It Is Well With My Soul"
7. "The Old Rugged Cross"
8. "I Need Thee Every Hour"
9. "How Great Thou Art"
10. "I'll Fly Away"
11. "Jesus Paid It All"
13. "When I'm Gone"