Southern Gospel Christmas Songs

Edit: By the way, this is my personal 1000th post on this blog.

Southern Gospel artists recording a Christmas album typically use a mix of carols and secular Christmas songs. But there have been some excellent songs written for and recorded by Southern Gospel artists.

If you were recording a CD and chose to only use songs written or originally recorded within our genre, what songs would you choose? Are there enough that you could come out with a strong project?

Here are five that come to mind:

  • Glory to God in the Highest (Inspirations, Brian Free & Assurance, Old Friends, Signature Sound / written by Daryl Williams)
  • Mary, Did You Know (Gaither Vocal Band / lyrics by Mark Lowry)
  • Tonight (Signature Sound / written by Gloria & Benjy Gaither)
  • It’s Jesus (Mark Trammell Trio / written by Dianne Wilkinson)
  • His Name Was John (Perrys / writen by Ronald Martin and Kyla Rowland)

With that, perhaps, as a start, can any of you come up with a list of ten SG-originated Christmas songs you would like to record on a SG Christmas project?

About Daniel J. Mount

Daniel Mount has written 3198 posts.

Daniel J. Mount is the founder and editor of Southern Gospel Journal.


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54 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. I’d add Beautiful Star of Bethlehem to the list.

  2. Yes, that one definitely belongs.

  3. I would add “Glory To God In The Highest”
    “Come Make A Place In Me”
    & ” Sweet Baby Jesus”

  4. I recorded “Look Who Just Checked In” on my Christmas CD. “That Little Baby” is also another cool Christmas song by Gold City.

    • do you have the lyrics to Look Who jut checked in?

      • Unfortunately, I don’t. Also, copyright law prohibits the entire lyric from being posted here, but if someone finds them online, I’m fine with a link being posted.

  5. You’re forgetting So Much God.

  6. Well, there are so many great songs to choose from! I’d say:
    “I Wanna Hear The Angels Sing” (Hoppers)
    “Cherish That Name” (Greater Vision”
    “Unspeakable Joy” (Goodmans)
    “Little One” (Gaither Vocal Band)
    “Hand of Sweet Release” (Gaither Vocal Band)
    “The Shepherds Found The Lamb” (Greater Vision)
    “Heaven’s Child” (Florida Boys)
    “Christmas With A Captial C” (Legacy 5)
    “A Little Peace On Earth” (Legacy 5)
    “Go Tell Everyone” (Gaither Vocal Band)

    I know some of these song were originally recorded by some other groups, but these are the cuts I have in my collection. In any case, this was fun!

  7. I would add “It’s Still The Greatest Story Ever Told” To that list, I love that song.

  8. Last year, around Christmas time (of course!), I heard a song called “I’ll Never Forget the Day Santa Claus Got Saved.” Now that takes the cake of being the most interesting ever. I heard it on a local radio station; however, the radio dj gave no information as to whom the artist was who recorded it.

    As far as a great Southern Gospel Christmas song, I would include “That Little Baby” recorded by Gold City. I love that song!!

  9. I’ll add “Glorious Impossible” by GVB to the list. Great song, and some great harmony by the group!

  10. Thanks Aaron, I was just going to add that GVB song too!

  11. I would say almost the entire “Still The Greatest Story” album by the GVB qualifies, which is why I was disappointed with the new one they just did. Instead of strong, new Christmas material, they rehashed the standards.

  12. Here’s my list of 10, in no particular order. I have the artist that recorded it in parenthesis. many have recorded some of these songs, I’m just posting my favorites. Congrats on your 1000th post, Daniel! What a great accomplishment!

    ORDINARY BABY (Reba Rambo) – written by Gloria Gaither & Dony McGuire

    MARY, DID YOU KNOW (GVB) – written by Mark Lowry & Buddy Greene

    BEAUTIFUL STAR OF BETHLEHEM (Ben Speer) – written by Adgar M. Pace and R. Fisher Boyce

    REACHING (GVB) – written by Bill & Gloria Gaither

    GOOD NEWS (The Hoppers) – written by James Anderson & Walter C. Carter

    REJOICE WITH EXCEEDING GREAT JOY (the Martins) – written by Lanny Wolfe

    THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD HAS COME (the Isaacs) – written by Sonya Isaacs and Rebecca Isaacs-Bowman

    GLORY TO GOD (Talley Trio) – written by Ray Scarborough

    Sweet Baby Jesus (Jeff & Sheri Easter, Charlotte Ritchie) – written by Sheri Easter

    FEAR NOT (Kim Hopper) – written by Daryl K. Williams

  13. Thanks!

    Meagan, I wish I knew all the songs on your list, but you actually pulled out a few I’ve yet to hear. Great list, though – I see you’re the first person to try to assemble a complete list. :)

  14. WONDER OF WONDERS by the Inspirations must be included. No song ever has captured the wonder of God becoming flesh like this one. HOPE HAS HANDS by the Hoppers would be my other choice.

  15. “Hope Has Hands” written by Phil Cross, recorded by the Hoppers.

  16. Here’s my list of the first dozen that came to mind:

    1. Sweet Christmas Birth–Karen Peck
    2. He Put The Merry In Merry Christmas–Kirk Talley
    3. I Wanna Hear The Angels Sing–Hoppers
    4. Emanuel–Talley Trio
    5. Give The Gift–Tribute Quartet
    6. Jesus Is The Reason–McKameys
    7. Glory To God In The Highest–The Specks
    8. Christmas Means Jesus–The Isaacs
    9. Heaven’s Child–Martins
    10. When A Savior Dreams–Ruppes
    11. From Bethlehem to Calvary–Ponder/Sikes/Wright
    12. Go Tell Everyone–Gaither Vocal Band

    There are so many more good ones out there, that I could probably make two or three more lists. We’re very fortunate to have great writers in southern gospel music who keep finding new ways to tell the old story! Merry Christmas to everyone.

  17. Really, Daniel? I figured you would know all of those! Wow. Let me know what you think when you listen to them. If you want to know what CDs those are on, let me know.

  18. I actually know which CDs most of those are on. Believe it or not, I don’t own 100% of the SG CDs ever released…yet. ;)

  19. Cherish That Name was recorded by the Cathedrals in 1981, Richie.

  20. Thanks, Samuel. I knew they had. I don’t have a cut of their recording, but I have the GV one. I know the Oak Ridge Boys cut “Little One” in the 80′s, but again I went with the cuts I was familiar with.
    Daniel, I thought my list was complete! Thrrow a brother a bone! Just kidding. Want to say what a great board you have. Nice to be apart of a board that you don’t have to wear armor to post on. Keep it up!

  21. Oh, you did get 10!

    I’m really sorry about that. Somehow it looked like 6-8 to me on first glance.

  22. I’ve always loved the Oaks’ version of “There’s A New Kid In Town” with a full band, as opposed to the more common acoustic arrangement most artists do. They also put an acapella chorus of “Away In A Manger” on the beginning of the song.

  23. I would love to have the lyrics to “From Bethlehem to Calvary, Jesus Christ Is Still The Only Way” by Ponder, Sykes & Wright. I have looked everywhere, but cannot seem to find them. My email is ma-rk@hotmail.com

    Thanks.

  24. Does anyone know where I can get the music for “Fear Not” written by Darryl Williams??

  25. “My Heart Would Be Your Bethlehem” and “The Night Heaven Kissed Earth.”

    Yes, I know this thread is not only outdated but out of season. Do I care? ;-)

    • I don’t care! I listen to SG Christmas music year-round.

      • I know. I had to wean myself gradually off the GVB Style Christmas record so I wouldn’t get sick of it before December. Now I’m trying to do the same with EHSS’s Christmas self-titled…that one’s really hard! But I think I’ve discovered the secret…I only put three songs from it on my iPod. The rest is in my Windows Media library, but I can’t carry that around with me. So hopefully that’ll work.

  26. This is a great site that has helped me choose some great songs for our Christmas Drama, with one difficulty, finding the music and tracks! We are line dancing to “Look Who Just Checked in” and I ended up just typing the words to use for the choreography. Would love to know if anyone has leads to finding these tracks or karaoke for a “one time” use. Thanks so much! email arisedancer@yahoo.com

  27. Look who just checked in is available (at least on the album CD track) from http://www.goldcityqt.com.

    http://goldcitystore.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWCATS&Category=4

    I have checked some places for generic tracks by themselves with no luck. The Gaithers did a version too, but I haven’t found the tracks.

  28. I would like to find the song called”One Bethlehem Night’ and the artist if you could help me.

    • I can’t find the song either but the artist are “The Encouragers”

    • i would like to have the lyrics to the song ( one bethlehem night)

      • It’s against the law to post them here, unless the song’s copyright owner(s) were to happen to come onto this site and authorize it. You might consider typing them out, or searching to find an artist who has recorded the song and asking them.

  29. How do I get the words to From Bethlehem to Calvary?

  30. Trying to find the music for Christmas Music, Good News by James Anderson & Walter C Carter, sung by The Hoppers & Glory to God in the Highest (Inspirations, Brian Free & Assurance, Old Friends, Signature Sound / written by Daryl Williams). Can anyone help

  31. Thanks for the quick reply. I have tracked down Glory to God but they don’t post to the UK so I am having a friend forward it

    • I fill orders placed through that site, and I can assure you that Crossroads does indeed ship to the UK! Oh, and you can order digitally and get it instantly… :)

  32. Does anyone know where I can find a huge list of the most popular SG Christmas songs. . . looking to put together aprogram for radio.
    Thanks!
    -JJ

    • Much as it hurts to say that, the huge list of the most popular SG Christmas songs is essentially the same as any other secular artist would record, except that Southern Gospel artists also record “Mary, Did You Know,” “Beautiful Star of Bethlehem,” and, once in a while, “Hope has Hands (Grace Has a Face).” Other than that, there’s little difference from what a secular singer would record.

      • That does seem like a slight exaggeration… Not to mention that secular artists tend to “tune in to their spiritual side” (yuck) and record the religious ones. I can’t help it; when I buy a Christmas album, I want the classic Christmas carols. There’s something emotional about it that newer songs just.can’t. touch. For the most part (99%).

        Not said in an argumentative way, I hope. Just a positive commentary. :)

  33. Are you saying that “And His Name Was John” is a Christmas song?

  34. I HAVE SO ENJOYED READING EACH OF THESE, I TOO AM LOOKING FOR THE WORDS TO ONE BETHLEHEM NIGHT , I THINK IT IS AN OLD BLUEGRASS SONG DONT KNOW WHO SANG IT BLESSINGS TO YOU ALL

    • Copyright law won’t permit them to be posted here. You might try Googling them.

  35. Comment

    • Is it possible for someone to give me a couple words that I can’t understand from the song “Christ is Born” ? At the end of the chorus it say: “Joy is here……………for” (I just can’t seem to understand what words are between here and for.)

      • Jena, the words are, “Joy is here and lives on..”

  36. Thanks so much! That’s a great help!
    My kids also want me to double check on the words in the 1st verse, now. What is between longing and come
    “longing………..Come”

  37. How about I’d Still Like to go to Grandma’s House on Christmas – sung best by the Talley’s when Kirk was with them.

  38. The first song that comes to my mind was performed by Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder, it’s called Go Children. It’s an upbeat tune with plenty of gospel. Although it’s bluegrass gospel, it still brings the message loud and clear.

  39. We really like the song”Christ is Born” sung by Kim Hopper and the Greenes. Does anyone know what the words are in the 1st verse between longing and come? It would be the 2nd line in the song.

  40. It would be interesting to see how many songs could be added now, 4 years later.

    For example, here’s one:
    Peace On Earth Tonight -Kim Collingsworth