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|Date & Time||Event||Location|
Jan 22, 2015
|Bill Gaither||Estero, FL|
Jan 23, 2015
|Bill Gaither||Jacksonville, FL|
Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena
Bill Gaither was born on March 28, 1936, in Alexandria, Indiana. He took piano lessons as a child and listened to the music of the Mills Brothers, Rosemary Clooney, Patti Page, and Andy Williams. Gaither first became interested in gospel music in 1948, although he admits he was drawn more to the style than the message of the songs at that time. In 1953 and 1954, he went to the Stamps School of Music in Dallas, Texas. While there, he met Charlie Hodge, and the two joined up with two more friends to form a gospel-singing group called the Path Finders. Bill Gaither and the Path Finders sang at churches and fairs but after eight months realized they were not succeeding.
Gaither formed another gospel group while attending Anderson College in 1956. The group was called the Bill Gaither Trio and consisted of Bill, his sister, Mary Ann, and his brother, Danny. In 1962, he married his wife Gloria, and the two began writing and recording music together. Today, Bill Gaither and Gloria Gaither have written over 500 songs and produced nearly fifty albums! The sales of Bill Gaither albums have been incredible, with over 20 million albums and DVDs sold. Bill and Gloria Gaither are the most successful gospel singer/songwriters of all time. One of Bill Gaither's best-known songs is "He Touched Me" (1963) because it was recorded by Elvis Presley. Additionally, "Because He Lives" (1970) and "The King is Coming" (2002) are also very popular songs by the artist. Notable Bill Gaither albums include Heaven (2003), Going Home (2003), and Church in the Wildwood (2005).
During his career, Bill Gaither has been awarded numerous Dove and Grammy Awards, was named the Christian Songwriter of the Century by the American Society of Composers and Publishers (ASCAP) in 2000, and was honored with the Indiana Historical Society Living Legend Award in 2006.