May 4

How Great Thou Art: A Hymn That Created a History

How Great Thou Art soulful covers

“How Great Thou Art” is a Christian hymn that has roots that go back to the 1880’s. The song was originally a poem written by Carl Gustav Bobergof Sweden. It was later translated into English by Stuart K. Hine, who then added additional lyrics. In the ’50s, Manna Music of California purchased the song and made some minor lyrical changes. The very first person in the U.S. to professionally record the worship song was Bill Carle in 1958 and the song’s popularity soared from there.

There have been several notable singers who have performed their own covers of the classic song. Alan Jackson, Martina McBride, Elvis Presley, Charlie Daniels and Dolly Parton have all taken on the hymn.

Below are videos of the most moving performances of the hymn.

1. Carrie Underwood and Vince Gill’s Cover of How Great Thou Art

Carrie Underwood’s powerful, soulful vocals will give you chills in this throwback performance of “How Great Thou Art” with Vince Gill. She covered the Christian hymn with Gill during ACM’s Girl’s Night Out celebration in 2011. The evening was a tribute to superstar women who helped pave the way for other female singers in the country music industry.

Gill mostly backs up Underwood on vocals and played the guitar. Her voice soared through each note, and many of the audience members were in tears by the end. It’s obvious that she moved everyone in the room with her performance.

2. Alan Jackson’s Cover of How Great Thou Art

In this video, country superstar Alan Jackson is performing this hymn and it’s absolutely breathtaking. This is hands down one of the best performances I’ve ever seen. When you think of all the amazing things the Lord has done, you can’t help but lift your hands in praise to the Heavens. What an amazing God. Amen!

3. Elvis Presley’s Cover of How Great Thou Art

The studio recording released in 1967 was amazing, but there is just something about Elvis Presley singing it live. Hearing the passion behind this song just creates one of the most amazing performances from Elvis.

This was Elvis’s last concert before his untimely death at age 42 on August 16, 1977. Throughout the concert, you will notice Elvis forget the lyrics, but his performance of this song makes me want to cry. Unbelievably powerful and talented.

4. Joey+Rory’s Cover of How Great Thou Art

Gospel music and country duo Joey + Rory kind of go hand in hand, don’t y’all think? The song has been covered by just about every country singer, but the way these two sings unlike any other. Joey’s beautiful delivery in addition to Rory’s harmony makes their version picture perfect in every way.

5. Lois Cunningham’s Cover of How Great Thou Art

If the name Lois Cunningham seems familiar, it’s likely because she joined  Josh Turner for a special spontaneous performance of “How Great Thou Art” at the Grand Ole Opry in 2016. The entire audience was moved by her beautiful piano rendition of the classic hymn, giving her a standing ovation at the end of the performance. A video of the performance quickly went viral, garnering over 11 million views, so far, on the Opry’s YouTube.

Is your favorite cover of “How Great Thou Art” included in the list? Share with us your thoughts. And folks, if you like to read more articles about our favorite country stars, you can check Country Thang Daily website or follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


Allan Jackson, Carrie Underwood, Country Gospel Songs, Elvis Presley, how great thou art, Joey+Rory, Josh Turner, Vince Gill

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