Faith Hill has dedicated a newly-released cover of Mindy Smith’s “Come to Jesus” to her mother, Edna Perry, who died on October 30th.
Originally recorded in late 2003, “Come to Jesus” became a hit the following year, when Smith released her own version of the Christian song. Hill’s recording remained unreleased for more than a decade, only hitting stores last week as the final track on her Deep Tracks compilation. Largely composed of under-the-radar album cuts that were never released as singles, Deep Tracks also includes two additional songs that, like “Come to Jesus,” never found their way onto an album.
“Three weeks ago today my mom passed away,” Hill wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday, November 20th. “Mom often asked if I would ever get around to recording a gospel album. That’s all she wanted to hear me sing. I’m thankful that she was able to hear this song before she took a seat on the glory train. This is ‘Come to Jesus’ dedicated to my mom.” Listen below.
Bold, bluesy and rooted in the southern stomp of country-gospel music, Hill’s interpretation of “Come to Jesus” provided comfort to more than one ailing parent. Tug McGraw, the biological father of her husband Tim McGraw, lost a battle with brain cancer in January 2004, not long after she finished tracking the song. Although still unmastered, the rough version of “Come to Jesus” became one of Tug’s favorite songs during the final weeks of his life.
“Tim played him my rough cut,” Hill explains in a press release, “and Tug listened to it multiple times a day until his passing.”
In October, Hill and McGraw jointly announced plans for their Soul2Soul The World Tour 2017, which begins April 7th in New Orleans.