Alabama and The Oak Ridge Boys are speaking out about their epic “Jesus and John Wayne” collaboration, for the Gaither Tribute: Honoring the Songs of Bill & Gloria Gaither album. The two iconic groups have been friends and fans of each other for decades, which is what made combining their talents on one song so special, to all of them.
“It was a fun song to record,” says Alabama’s Randy Owen. “Our version with The Oaks singing harmony with us gives this song a strong message.”
“It was an honor to get invited to do a song on Bill and Gloria’s tribute project, especially on such a cool song,” adds Teddy Gentry. “And double-fun to have our Hall of Fame brothers, the fabulous Oak Ridge Boys, join us for the first time on a song!”
The Oak Ridge Boys, who are celebrating 50 years together as a group with the four current members, are equally thrilled about having a song out with Alabama as well.
“It was so exciting to record with Alabama,” The Oak Ridge Boys’ Duane Allen says. “We have all grown up together in the music business and they are some of our very best friends. To record ‘Jesus and John Wayne’ with Alabama, a song written by Bill and Gloria Gaither, is a perfect way to combine the voices and careers of both groups and the writers of this song. We all grew up loving Jesus, and as little boys (we are still little boys at heart!), we also loved John Wayne. I hope you enjoy listening as much as we enjoyed singing with Alabama.”
Gaither Tribute: Honoring the Songs of Bill and Gloria Gaither also features Reba McEntire, Ronnie Dunn, Hillary Scott & The Scott Family, Josh Turner, Ronnie Milsap, Lee Ann Womack, The SteelDrivers and CeCe Winans.
“It’s such an honor to get to sing not one, but two of Bill and Gloria Gaither’s special songs with my sister Susie and Sonya and Becky Isaacs,” McEntire says of singing both “He Touched Me” and “Something Beautiful” with one of her siblings and her former tour openers.
Paul Sizelove, President of Gaither Music Group, is pleased to have so many artists participate in the album, paying tribute to gospel music’s most influential songwriters.
“This recording is a special one for all involved,” says Sizelove. “Each of these artists selected a song from Bill and Gloria’s renowned catalog and created new renditions of these classics. Tony worked with them to create a collection that truly represents the heart and style of each of these talented artists. We are so proud of the art they have created, and what an honor to the Gaither legacy to have these heartfelt recordings from these highly-respected performers.”
Gaither Tribute: Honoring the Songs of Bill & Gloria Gaither will be released on August 25. Pre-order the album at Gaither.com.