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Then and Now: Music Through the Years

The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has held hundreds of events around the world to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ. The message has stayed the same since the beginning, but the worship has changed with time.

1900s Billy Graham Crusades

From the beginning of Billy Graham’s Crusade ministry, George Beverly Shea and Cliff Barrows were the nucleus of the Crusade musical team. They were joined in 1950 by pianist Tedd Smith, and through the years, organists Don Hustad and John Innes provided additional accompaniment.

Billy Graham once said, “There is excellent singing under the direction of Cliff Barrows, some of the best religious music that you’ll ever hear.”

Below is a beloved video of Billy Graham, George Beverly Shea and Cliff Barrows singing “This Little Light of Mine.”

Video courtesy of the Gaither Vocal Band

2000s Franklin Graham Festivals

Though Cliff Barrows did sing at a few Franklin Graham Festivals, the music has more recently involved current and well-known artists and musicians.

At Franklin’s Jacksonville Festival of Hope in 2015, artists included Tenth Avenue North, Newsboys and Lacey Sturm. A few months later at the Greater Birmingham Festival of Hope, Franklin’s message was surrounded by artists such as Kari Jobe, Michael W. Smith and Kirk Franklin.

Check out how the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has adapted to a changing world. Compared to the video above, the video below shows the vast differences between the musical production set-up and style of worship from the beginning of the Billy Graham Crusades to now.

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