Gospel music is written to inspire. Just listen to the lyrics of any given gospel song, and this fact will become quite clear. Messages of hope and encouragement are at the heart of the majority of gospel songs, making them an appealing choice to most audiences. A lot of gospel music was written with the piano and vocals in mind, since the two are a well-suited combination that often invokes emotion. The list of great gospel piano songs is vast, but here are 3 that are sure to inspire you.
“Amazing Grace” is one of the most recognized gospel songs ever written. It was composed by John Newton in 1779, and has been adapted to fit many different styles of music throughout its history. This hymn is quite popular within gospel circles, and has been played and sung by some of the greatest gospel musicians, such as Mahalia Jackson and Aretha Franklin. It is an extremely inspirational piece for piano and voice, written with powerful lyrics and an unforgettable melody. When played on the piano, it can be improvised to be incredibly simple or full of notes. This is one of the most versatile gospel piano songs because it can also be played in a melancholy manner or with much joy.
“Precious Lord, Take my Hand” is another gospel piano song that is sure to inspire. The lyrics were written by the well-known gospel singer and composer, Thomas Dorsey. He wrote them in 1932, following the death of his wife, who died in childbirth. Not long after his wife’s death, Dorsey’s newborn son passed away, causing him to write this deeply touching piece. Mahalia Jackson, a well-respected gospel singer, often sang this song at civil rights rallies. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who was the head of these rallies, loved this song, and it was even played at his funeral. The lyrics and piano melody of this piece invoke feelings of grief, sympathy and inspiration towards a greater hope.
Another inspirational piano piece is “Wade in the Water,” which is a magnificant gospel song that traces back to the Underground Railroad. It was first ever published by John Wesley Work, Jr. in 1901, and has been making its rounds among gospel groups ever since. It has an eerily written piano melody, which reflects a bitter longing towards something better. This feeling is provoked for good reason, as the song in written in regards to the Biblical story of the Israelite’s exit out of Egypt.
These 3 gospel piano tunes are incredibly inspiring and encouraging. Whether accompanied by vocals and lyrics or not, these tunes have the power to grab the attention of their listeners. “Amazing Grace,” “Precious Lord, Take my Hand,” and “Wade in the Water” are pieces of music that have impacted many people for generations, and will continue to do so. In a world that can be harsh and unkind, many are looking for music to inspire and give hope, and these 3 songs will do just that.