Ok, so I have a confession. Way back when I studied journalism at Louisiana State University, we were taught to be impartial and unwaveringly unbiased. The goal was to treat each subject objectively, but I confess all that goes out the window when the assignment is writing about Amy Grant and her incredible catalogue of songs.
I’ve had the pleasure of covering Amy Grant‘s career for more than 30 years and over the decades, my admiration has continually grown, not only for her music, but for the kind, compassionate woman I’ve gotten to know over the course of many interviews. Amy is quite frankly every good thing you would hope she is… and so much more.
Of course, Grant’s career accomplishments are legendary. She paved the way for every Christian artist who wanted to share the gospel beyond the church. She was the first Christian artist to have a platinum album, score a No. 1 hit on the pop charts and perform on the Grammy Awards. She’s recorded powerful hymns and buoyant pop tunes and everything in between, earning numerous accolades along the way, including six Grammys and 26 Dove Awards. She’s a member of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Grant has been honored with a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Music City Walk of Fame. She was one of the honorees at last year’s 45th Kennedy Center Honors for lifetime artistic achievement. In October, she released her latest project, Lead Me On Live 1989, a retrospective from the 1988-1989 Lead Me On Tour.
Grant turns 63 on Saturday November 25th, and Sunday she’ll be hitting the road for a Christmas tour with longtime friend/collaborator Michael W. Smith, which will include stops in Atlanta, GA, New York City, NY, Dallas, TX and Kansas City, MO. She returns to Nashville Dec. 13 to begin her Christmas at the Ryman residency with her husband Vince Gill that includes 12 shows at the historic Music City venue.
Top 20 Amy Grant songs
Putting together this top 20 list of Amy Grant songs was challenging and it’s still stinging that there wasn’t room for such notable favorites as “Good for Me,” “Angels,” “Takes a Little Time,” “Oh How the Years Go By,” “Don’t Try so Hard” and so many others.
Here’s hoping you enjoy the memories wrapped up in the wonderful music on this list. It’s fun to revisit the big 80s hair and fun fashion in some of the early pop music clips and I dare anyone not to cry watching her performance of “Somewhere Down the Road” and the Columbine Memorial in 1999.
So big thanks Amy for all the years of great music and wishing her the best birthday!
1. “Old Man’s Rubble” (1977) Amy Grant songs
Born in Augusta, GA, Grant moved to Nashville with her family as a child and by her teens she had begun writing songs. Her church youth leader Brown Bannister helped her record a demo tape and Grant landed a record deal before she turned 16.
Her first album was a self-titled set released on Word Record’s Myrrh label that spawned three top ten Christian hits, including the up tempo “Old Man’s Rubble.” Grant wrote six of the 13 songs on her debut album and co-wrote a seventh.
2. “Father’s Eyes” (1979)
This beautiful ballad was the catalyst that propelled Amy Grant from earnest teenage singer/songwriter to one of Christian music brightest stars. Written by Gary Chapman, the song was the title track of Grant’s second album, which earned a Grammy nomination for Best Gospel Performance, Contemporary.
“Father’s Eyes” became a No. 1 hit and the inspiring lyric has become prayer for generations of believers: When people look inside my life, I want to hear them say She’s got her Father’s eyes/Her Father’s eyes/Eyes that find the good in things when good is not around/Eyes that find the source of help when help just can’t be found/Eyes full of compassion/Seeing every pain/Knowing what you’re going through/And feeling it the same/Just like my Father’s eyes.
3. “El Shaddai” (1982)
Grant recorded “El Shaddai” on her landmark Age to Age album, which became the first Christian music album to be certified gold, signifying sales of more than 500,000 copies. “El Shaddai,” which translates to God Almighty, was written by Michael Card and John Thompson.
Card first recorded the powerful anthem on his 1981 debut album Legacy, but it was Grant’s heart-stirring rendition that became a top ten hit. It won Song of the Year at the 1983 Dove Awards and helped earn Card the Songwriter of the Year accolade. It was also named one of the Songs of the Century by the Recording Industry Association of American (RIAA) in 2001.
4. “Tennessee Christmas” (1983)
Written by Grant and her first husband Gary Chapman, this beautiful ballad about the joys of celebrating a simple, love-filled Christmas in Tennessee has become a holiday classic. Grant is known for her popular Christmas tours and especially for her annual residency at Nashville’s famed Ryman Auditorium. “Tennessee Christmas” is always a highlight of each show.
5. “Thy Word” (1984)
Written by Grant and longtime friend Michael. W. Smith, this beautiful lyric comes directly from Psalm 119:105, which states, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” Grant recorded “Thy Word” on her Straight Ahead album and her emotional rendering of that comforting scripture translated into one of Christian music’s most enduring hits.
6. “Find a Way” (1985)
By the mid 80s, Grant had become the most recognizable artist in Christian music and would soon expand her reach into the pop world with such hits as “Find a Way,” her first single released beyond the Christian market through a joint deal with Word and mainstream label A&M Records.
The catchy up-tempo hit was culled from her pioneering album Unguarded, which featured four different covers of Grant sporting a leopard print jacket, a look that was edgy at that time for a Christian singer. “Find a Way” became a crossover hit for Grant and peaked at No. 7 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart and also became her fifth No. 1 Christian single.
7. “Stay for a While” (1986)
Released as the first single from Grant’s album The Collection, this hauntingly beautiful hit was written by Grant and friends Michael W. Smith and Wayne Kirkpatrick. Mr. Mister lead singer Richard Page contributes the ethereal background vocals that just add to the song’s overall cool vibe. “Stay for a While” topped the Christian chart and made it to the Top 20 of the Adult Contemporary List.
8. “Next Time I Fall in Love” (1986) Amy Grant songs
Songwriters Bobby Caldwell and Paul Gordon wrote this song specifically for Peter Cetera and he chose Grant as his duet partner. “I was looking for somebody who wasn’t that logical a choice,” Cetera has been quoted as saying. “Actually, I was going to use an ‘unknown’ singer until someone at my record company suggested Amy Grant. I thought she was a great choice.”
The song became a huge hit, going to No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and spending two weeks at the summit on the Adult Contemporary chart. It was also nominated for a Grammy for Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with vocals.
9. “Saved by Love” (1988) Amy Grant songs
In a distinguished repertoire that includes a lot of feel-good songs, “Saved by Love” is a precious gem. The lyric — penned by Grant, Justin Peters and Chris Smith — celebrates the life of a woman named Laura, her devotion to her family and faith in Jesus. Released as the first single from Grant’s Lead Me On album, “Saved By Love” went to No. 1 on the Christian chart and has long been a fan favorite.
10. “Lead Me On” (1988)
Over the years Grant’s music has reflected the depth and breadth of human emotion from the jubilant to the searingly reflective and this landmark hit falls into the latter category. Written by Grant, Wayne Kirkpatrick and Michael W. Smith, the lyric speaks poignantly about slavery and the Holocaust and man’s inhumanity toward his fellow man.
It went to No. 1 on the Christian chart and has remained one of the pillars of Grant’s career. Lead Me On was named the Greatest Contemporary Christian Album of All Time by CCM magazine.
11. “Baby Baby” (1991) Amy Grant songs
Released as the first single from Grant’s multi-platinum selling Heart in Motion album, “Baby Baby” cemented her status as a major pop star, spending two weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
The music was written by Keith Thomas (who also produced the song) and the lyrics were written by Grant, who said she was inspired by her six-week-old daughter Millie’s face. Millie appeared with Grant when she performed the song on the 34th Grammy Awards, where it received three nominations including Song and Record of the Year. Check out Millie’s adorable Grammy appearance in this clip.
12. “Every Heartbeat” (1991)
Grant followed the success of “Baby Baby” with another huge pop hit. Written by Grant, Wayne Kirkpatrick and Charlie Peacock, “Every Heartbeat” is a buoyant love song with an infectious melody. The song peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100 and the Adult Contemporary chart. It’s been covered by other artists, including Sixpence None the Richer and comedian Mark Lowry, who parodied the song as “Every Teacher.”
13. “That’s What Love is For” (1991)
This became Grant’s third top ten single on the Billboard Hot 100 from her hugely successful Heart in Motion album. Written by Grant, Michael Omartian and Mark Mueller, the song was produced by Omartian and topped the Adult Contemporary chart for three weeks and peaked at No. 7 on the Hot 100. The cool video was filmed at the Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve in Idaho.
14. “I Will Remember You” (1992)
Yet another single from Grant’s Heart in Motion album, this gorgeous ballad speaks to the moments that take our breath and remain firmly fixed in our hearts. Written by Grant, Gary Chapman and Keith Thomas, the song peaked at No. 2 on the Adult Contemporary chart and has continued to be a fan favorite.
15. “Breath of Heaven (Mary’s Song)” (1992)
“Breath of Heaven” was originally written by Chris Eaton and when Grant heard it, she asked if she could make some changes and record it for her Home for Christmas album. Eaton agreed and the result is a beautiful ballad that shares the emotions Mary must have felt as she anticipates the birth of Jesus. Over the years, the song has been covered by Donna Summer, Jessica Simpson, Point of Grace, Amy’s husband Vince Gill and Gladys Knight.
16. “House of Love” (1994)
The title track of her 11th studio album, “House of Love” is a soulful hit written by Wally Wilson, Kenny Greenberg and Greg Barnhill. Though she and country icon Vince Gill have now been married 23 years, the two were new friends when they recorded this hit duet. Looks like their vocal compatibility was an early sign of the harmonious life to come.
17. “Rock of Ages” (2005) Amy Grant songs
In 2002, Grant returned to her roots with the album Legacy. . .Hymns and Faith. She followed that successful collection with 2005’s Rock of Ages…Hymns and Faith, which earned Grant her sixth Grammy Award. She recorded the title track with Gill and these two stellar albums helped revive classic church hymns for a new generation.
18. “Somewhere Down the Road” (2010)
This poignant song was originally released on Grant’s Behind the Eyes album and then became the title track of her 17th studio album, which had a cover that featured a painting by Amy.
Amy wrote the song with longtime friend and collaborator Wayne Kirkpatrick and the tender ballad acknowledges how heartbreaking and confusing the trials of life can be but shares there will be answers somewhere down the road. Grant performed a compelling rendition of the song at the 1999 Columbine High School Memorial Service.
19. “Better Than a Hallelujah” (2010)
Nominated for a Grammy for Best Gospel song, this tender ballad was written by Sarah Hart and Chapin Hartford. It became a top ten Christian hit for Grant and the poignant video was nominated for a Dove Award. The thoughtful lyric speaks of how God hears us during out most trying times and how the honest cries of a breaking heart are better than a hallelujah.
20. “Trees We’ll Never See” (2023) Amy Grant songs
Though Amy Grant has been recording songs for nearly four decades, she’s not resting on her laurels. Earlier this year she released two amazing new songs, “What You Heard” and “Trees We’ll Never See.” The latter song was written by Michael White and Marshall Chapman, who produced Grant’s 2013 album How Mercy Looks From Here.
“I get choked up thinking about it. It just felt like I could have written it. It’s so much how I see life,” Grant told Billboard when the song released. “Everybody assumes I wrote it because it’s like the mantra I have lived by. So you could have knocked me over with a feather. He said, ‘I’ve hung onto this for five years. I never thought anybody would record it.’” Grant has been performing “Trees We’ll Never See” on tour this year and it’s quickly become a fan favorite.
Bonus: “When My Amy Prays” (2019)
Ok, so this isn’t an Amy Grant hit, but it was written about Amy by her husband Vince Gill, and if you haven’t heard it, you need to. The beautiful tribute to his wife earned Gill Best Country Solo Performance at the 63th Annual Grammy Awards, making it his 22nd Grammy win. In this video, Vince is joined by Corrina Grant Gill, his daughter, with Amy.
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