Best known for his 1955 cover of Merle Travis' grim coal-mining song "Sixteen Tons," Tennessee Ernie Ford was an American icon. A singer, actor, and television host, Ford's charm, personality, and humor earned him major success throughout the 1950s and '60s. Over his long career, Ford sang everything from proto-rock & roll to gospel, recorded over 100 albums, and earned numerous honors and awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian award.
On July 22 Gaither Music will be servicing us with a brand new collection of 14 hymns out of Ford's extensive canon. Though Ford started off in country music, he eventually established himself as an excellent singer of gospel music with the release of Hymns in 1956. It became one of the top-selling albums of all time, spending 277 weeks in the Billboard 200 chart and achieving platinum status; Ford continued with further gospel recordings over the following years and 1964's Great Gospel Songs won him a Grammy. His deep baritone held the right amount of both seriousness and warmth to carry these classic spiritual tunes, and this gospel period ended up being one of his most successful ventures.
Here's the track listing for "Amazing Grace: 14 Treasured Hymns:"
01. A Mighty Fortress Is Our God
02. Blessed Assurance
03. How Great Thou Art
04. I Love To Tell The Story
05. In The Garden
06. Just As I Am, Without One Plea
07. Peace In The Valley
08. Precious Memories
09. Rock Of Ages
10. Sweet Hour Of Prayer
11. The Church In The Wildwood
12. The Old Rugged Cross
13. What A Friend We Have In Jesus
14. When They Ring Those Golden Bells