By Steve Turner
Behind our so much cherished hymn is an interesting tale spanning continents, cultures, and centuries. encouraged incidentally ''Amazing Grace'' maintains to alter and develop in attractiveness, acclaimed song author Steve Turner embarks on a trip to track the lifetime of the hymn, from Olney, England, the place it used to be written via former slave dealer John Newton, to tiny Plantain Island off the coast of Africa, the place Newton used to be held captive for nearly a yr, to the Kentucky-Tennessee border and different components of the South, the place the hymn first started to spread.
Newton were rescued from Africa by means of a service provider send while, in the course of an eleven-hour typhoon at the Atlantic, he switched over to Christianity. Years later, as a minister, he wrote the hymn to be used between his congregation. during the 19th century, ''Amazing Grace'' seemed in additional and extra hymn books, and within the 20th century it rose to a gospel and folks usual sooner than exploding into pop track. it's been recorded via artists as various as Elvis Presley, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Tiny Tim, Al eco-friendly, Johnny funds, Rod Stewart, Chet Baker, and Destiny's baby. remarkable Grace heavily examines this contemporary heritage of the hymn via own interviews with recording artists.
From John Newton's superb lifestyles tale to the hymn's function in American spirituality and tradition, extraordinary Grace is an illuminating, thorough, and unheard of musical history.
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Extra info for Amazing Grace: The Story of America's Most Beloved Song
There was now little overt evidence of the arrogance and pride that had led him into so much trouble, but as he later acknowledged this was not because of a moral transformation, merely a lack of opportunity. In his beggarly condition, what did he have to be proud of? In this state of bondage, what would arrogance achieve? His apparent meekness was the result of a broken spirit rather than a renewed heart. “I was no further changed than a tiger tamed by hunger. ” Image unavailable for electronic edition Chapter 3 M I D -AT L A N T I C C R I S I S Well, I heard that once he was kind of a wayward guy and that he got sick and wrote that song on his death bed.
He prayed, meditated, and read the Bible for what he said was “the greatest part of every day,” turned vegetarian, went on fasts, and avoided all conversation so that he wouldn’t be guilty of saying anything foolish or sinful. Abstinence made him feel extremely religious but it didn’t bring love, joy, and peace. “It was poor religion,” said Newton. “It left me, in many respects, under the power of sin. ” Then, at the age of seventeen, while anchored outside the Dutch port of Middleburg, he picked up a book that was to have a decisive effect on his life, breaking the cycle of indulgence and asceticism.
In this state of bondage, what would arrogance achieve? His apparent meekness was the result of a broken spirit rather than a renewed heart. “I was no further changed than a tiger tamed by hunger. ” Image unavailable for electronic edition Chapter 3 M I D -AT L A N T I C C R I S I S Well, I heard that once he was kind of a wayward guy and that he got sick and wrote that song on his death bed. —Ira Tucker, dixie hummingbirds, 2001 I once was lost, but now am found, Was blind, but now I see. —John Newton, “ amazing grace, ” 1772 The coast of Guinea is a country from whose bourn few travellers, who have once ventured to settle there, ever return.