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on August 19, 2012
Again, another great set from Readers Digest, this one from 1975. When Readers Digest did a set, they did it right.

Unlike a lot of releases from this time period these boast an excellent sound quality. I have both the LP and 8-track versions and both are well produced. The 8-tracks were high quality RCA carts that didn't have the messy pads that deteriorated like other manufacturers did. The LP version is a nicely packaged set with all 8 albums having their individual sleeves. These make for a really nice bookcase piece as well.

On each sleeve you find each individual song listed along with a brief description of the song's history and something about the artist who sings it.

The songs themselves are what you would expect from Readers Digest. There is country gospel, some southern gospel, some traditional gospel.

The tracks are as follows:

Album One
Side One: Give Me That Old Time Religion
That Old Time Religion ~ George Beverly Shea
In The Sweet By and By ~ Anita Bryant
Precious Memories ~ Norma Zimmer and Jim Roberts
Bringing In The Sheaves ~ George Beverly Shea with the Blackwood Brothers Quartet
Teach Me How To Pray ~ Jim Reeves
Will The Circle Be Unbroken ~ Burl Ives (courtesy of Word Records)

Side Two: Peace In The Valley
Peace In The Valley ~ Hank Locklin
Wings of a Dove ~ Dolly Parton
I Love To Tell The Story ~ Eddy Arnold
Take My Hand, Precious Lord ~ Chet Atkins
Let Me Live ~ Charley Pride
He's Got The Whole World In His Hands ~ The Billy Graham Los Angeles Crusade Choir

Album Two
Side One: The Church In The Wildwood
The Church In The Wildwood ~ Charley Pride
I Called His Name, He Took My Hand ~ Ray rice (courtesy of Word Records)
What A Friend We Have In Jesus ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer
I Saw The Light ~ Norma Jean
He'll Understand and Say Well Done ~ Hank Snow
May God Be With You ~ The Anita Kerr Quartet

Side Two: Rock of Ages
Rock of Ages ~ The King Family
Then I Met The Master ~ Dottie West
Child of the King ~ The Browns
Were You There? ~ Tony Fontane
He Touched Me ~ Anita Bryant
When They Ring Those Golden Bells ~ George Beverly Shea

Album Three
Side One: Count Your Blessings
Let The Lower Lights Be Burning ~ George Beverly Shea
Lonesome Valley ~ Bobby Bare
Softly and Tenderly ~ Roy Rogers and Dale Evans
Count Your Blessings ~ The Statesmen Quartet with Hovie Lister
Steal Away ~ Kenny Price
Shall We Gather At The River ~ Burl Ives

Side Two: Just A Closer Walk With Thee
God Walks These Hills With Me ~ Don Gibson
Just A Closer Walk With Thee ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer
Lead, Kindly Light ~ The King Family
The Savior Is Waiting ~ Norma Zimmer
The Wayfaring Stranger ~ Bob Dalrymple
Beyond The Sunset ~ Burl Ives

Album Four
Side One: An Evening Prayer
An Evening Prayer ~ The Browns
Family Bible ~ George Jones
The Great Speckled Bird ~ Danny Davis and the Nashville Brass
Most Richly Blessed ~ Jimmy Dean
Jesus, Hold My Hand ~ The Speer Family
A Perfect Day ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer

Side Two: Sunday Morning
Sunday Morning ~ Nat Stuckey and Connie Smith
A Little Bit of Sunday Every Day ~ George Hamilton IV
The Family Who Prays (Never Shall Part) ~ Porter Wagoner & the Blackwood Brothers
Standing On The Promises ~ Tony Fontane with The Statesmen Quartet & Hovie Lister
This Little Light of Mine ~ Roy Rogers and Dale Evans
When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder ~ Burl Ives and the Korean Orphan Choir

Album Five
Side One: Amazing Grace
Amazing Grace ~ Wayne Newton
Take My Hand In Yours, Dear Lord ~ The Pat Boone Family
Beautiful Isle of Somewhere ~ Tony Fontane
My Last Two Tens ~ Porter Wagoner & the Blackwood Brothers
When I Kneel Down To Pray ~ Anita Bryant
The 23rd Psalm: The Lord Is My Sheperd

Side Two: The Old Rugged Cross
His Love Takes Care of Me ~ Nat Stuckey and Connie Smith
Kneel At The Feet of Jesus ~ Willie Nelson
The Old Rugged Cross ~ Norma Zimmer
I've Got To Walk That Lonesome Road ~ The Blackwood Brothers Quartet featuring J.D. Sumner; bass
Land of Beulah ~ Wendy Bagwell and the Sunliters
Deep River ~ George Beverly Shea

Album Six
Side One: Blessed Assurance
Blessed Assurance ~ Jack Holcomb
The Touch of God's Hand ~ Tony Fontane and the Statesmen Quartet
This Ole House ~ Stuart Hamblen
Farther Along ~ Connie Smith
As Flows The River ~ James Blackwood
Oh Happy Day ~ Floyd Cramer, Piano and Chorus

Side Two: Whispering Hope
Spread A Little Love Around ~ Danny Lee and the Children of Truth
Love Lifted Me ~ Eddy Arnold
Whispering Hope ~ Skeeter Davis
I'll Fly Away ~ Jake Hess
We Gather Together ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer
Satisfied ~ Connie Smith

Album Seven
Side One: I Found The Answer
I Believe ~ Dolly Parton
My God Is Real ~ Don Gibson
His Name Is Wonderful ~ The Anita Kerr Quartet
I Found The Answer ~ Tony Fontane
Mansion On The Hill ~ The Browns (yes, the old Hank Williams song lol)
Sweet Hour of Prayer ~ Norma Zimmer

Side Two: Put Your Hand In The Hand
Put Your Hand In The Hand ~ Rex Humbard and the Cathedral Singers
How Great Thou Art ~ Kate Smith
Standing In The Need of Prayer ~ Jimmy Dean
His Eye Is On The Sparrow ~ Norma Zimmer
His Hands ~ Hank Snow
God Be With You (Till We Meet Again) ~ Jim Reeves

Album Eight
Side One: Brighten The Corner
Daddy Sang Bass ~ Nat Stuckey and Connie Smith
Brighten The Corner Where You Are ~ Ralph Carmichael (courtesy of Word Records)
Abide With Me ~ Anita Bryant (courtesy of Word Records)
Stand Up, Stand Up For Jesus ~ George Beverly Shea
Almost Persuaded ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer (courtesy of Word Records)
May The Good Lord Bless and Keep You ~ Eddy Arnold

Side Two: Faith Unlocks The Door
(Prayers Is The Key To Heaven) Faith Unlocks The Door ~ Norma Zimmer
Blest Be The Tie That Binds ~ Jim Roberts and Norma Zimmer
Flee As a Bird ~ George Beverly Shea
In The Garden ~ Connie Smith
My Cathedral ~ Jim Reeves
Let's Make A Joyful Noise ~ The Speer Family
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on November 5, 2014
An excellent blend of tradition and contemporary gospel by some artists you would expect, and some you wouldn't.
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