Country Throwback: Charley Pride Goes Gospel on 1971’s ‘Did You Think to Pray’

by Matthew Wilson
Country-Throwback-Charley-Pride-Goes-Gospel-on-1971s-Did-You-Think-to-Pray

Charley Pride was feeling the Holy Spirit in his 1971 gospel album. Pride offers his smooth-sounding baritone to a number of classic gospel hymns in “Did You Think to Pray.”

The album is a reminder of the importance of faith, at least to Pride. The late country singer used his platform as a nationally recognized star to interject a little God into people’s lives. Pride took his listeners to church with the 10 track album, which included “I’ll Fly Away” and “Time Out for Jesus.”

The album proved to be a rousing success for the artist and another high note in Pride’s historic career. In fact, the album won Pride two of his three Grammy Awards.

While “Kiss An Angel Good Morning” proved to be the most popular of Pride’s career, it was only nominated for a Grammy that year. Meanwhile, Pride’s gospel album took home the Grammy for Best Sacred Performance. Its single “Let Me Live” won the Grammy for Best Gospel Performance.

Charley Pride Passed Away on Dec. 12

“Let Me Live” feels more poignant than ever now that Pride is gone. The song speaks of life after death in heaven. Faith was obviously a big part of Pride. The country singer passed away on Dec. 12 at the age of 86. He died from complications related to COVID-19. Both country stars Joe Diffie and John Prine also succumbed to the virus earlier this year.

Since he exploded onto the scene in the 1960s, Pride has been a staple among the country music industry. The singer broke down barriers during a time of racial inequality and tension. He became the first African-American country star and inspired generations after to follow in his footsteps.

The country singer had a passion for mentoring young country musicians. He went out of his way to help up and coming talent succeed in the industry. All of country music mourned his death, and Pride will continue to live on through others and his music.

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