|"Peace in the Valley"|
|Song by Mahalia Jackson|
|Thomas A. Dorsey|
"Peace in the Valley" is a 1937 song written by Thomas A. Dorsey, originally for Mahalia Jackson. The song became a hit in 1951 for Red Foley and the Sunshine Boys, reaching number seven on the Country & Western Best Seller chart. It was among the first gospel recordings to sell one million copies. Foley's version was a 2006 entry into the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry.
After the success of Red Foley's interpretation, Jo Stafford recorded the song for her 1954 gospel album Garden of Prayer. Because of the rendition by Elvis Presley (with backing by the Jordanaires on his first Christmas album) in 1957, as well as what followed after his singing the song immediately after his requesting those watching his third and final appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show, on January 6 of that year, to send emergency aid for some 250,000 refugees fleeing Hungary after the late October 1956 double invasion of that country by the then Soviet Union, the song, which in addition Elvis dedicated to the refugees as the show's finale and to a television audience estimated at 50 million, yielded over the next 11 months contributions amounting to US$6 million, or the equivalent of US$49.5 million in 2017 dollars. The International Red Cross in Geneva, with the help of the US Army, organized the distribution of both perishables and non perishables purchased with the above-mentioned funds, to the refugees in both Vienna and London, where they settled, along with their families. for life. Eventually, the song became a country-pop favorite and was recorded by: Little Richard on his 1961 Quincy Jones-produced gospel album It's Real, Connie Francis on her 1961 album Sing Along with Connie Francis; George Jones on his 1962 album Homecoming in Heaven; Johnny Cash on his At San Quentin live album; Loretta Lynn; Dolly Parton; Screaming Trees, as a B-side to their "Dollar Bill" single; Ronnie Milsap; Art Greenhaw with the Jordanaires, Tom Brumley and the Light Crust Doughboys for the Grammy-Nominated album starring Ann-Margret titled God Is Love: The Gospel Sessions, and Faith Hill, for a concert special.
"Peace in the Valley" was sung by Eddie Clendening, portraying Elvis Presley, in the Broadway musical Million Dollar Quartet, which opened in New York in April 2010. Eddie Clendening also covered the song on the Million Dollar Quartet original Broadway cast album.