‘Blessed Assurance’: How Alan Jackson, Glen Campbell & Carrie Underwood Blessed Us With Versions of the Hymn

by Jim Casey
blessed-assurance-how-alan-jackson-glen-campbell-carrie-underwood-blessed-us-with-versions-of-the-hymn

“Blessed Assurance” is a traditional hymn that has been around for almost 150 years. The lyrics were penned in 1873 by blind composer Fanny Crosby, with the melody by organist Phoebe Knapp. Crosby was known as the “Queen of Gospel Song Writers,” having penned more than 8,000 hymns, including “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Saviour,” “To God Be the Glory,” and “Nearer the Cross,” among others.

Those familiar with “Blessed Assurance” may recognize Fanny’s powerful lyrics in the third stanza as both a reference to her own blindness and a testament to her faith: “Visions of rapture now burst on my sight.”

Over the years, Pat Boone, Charlie Daniels, Gladys Knight, Iris Dement, Ricky Skaggs, Oak Ridge Boys, and more recorded the hymn. Let’s take a look—and listen—to three versions of “Blessed Assurance” by Alan Jackson, Glen Campbell, and Carrie Underwood.

Alan Jackson

Alan Jackson returned to the church songs he loved as a child in Newnan, Georgia, by releasing his first gospel album, Precious Memories, in 2006. AJ recorded the 15-song offering as a gift to his mother, with covers of “I’ll Fly Away,” “In the Garden,” “How Great Thou Art,” and more. When it came time to pick Track 1, Alan chose to lead off the album with “Blessed Assurance.”

The album was certified Platinum by the RIAA for sales of 1 million units. It reached No. 1 on both the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and the Top Christian Albums chart.

Glen Campbell

Following his arrest for DUI in 2003, Glen Campbell found solace in his music. Specifically, Glen recorded two dozen uplifting songs at his home studio in 2004. The album was titled Love Is the Answer: 24 Songs of Faith, Hope, and Love. Not only did the album feature traditional hymns like “Amazing Grace,” “The Old Rugged Cross,” “Rock of Ages,” “Blessed Assurance,” and more, but also it included contemporary covers such as Bill Withers’ “Lean On Me,” James Taylor’s “Shower the People,” and more.

Carrie Underwood

Carrie Underwood released her first gospel album, My Savior, on March 26, 2021. The 13-song offering featured “Amazing Grace,” “The Old Rugged Cross,” “How Great Thou Art,” “Blessed Assurance,” and more. The album won the Grammy for Best Roots Gospel Album. It also reached No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart.

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