Amy Grant (b. 1960)
Amy Grant is one of contemporary Christian music's most prominent singer-songwriters. Since she began her career in 1978, she has released more than a dozen albums, won numerous Dove Awards, and had successful crossover albums into the pop music world. She continues to influence both Christian and pop music, especially with her albums Heart in Motion, House of Love, and Behind the Eyes.
Amy Lee Grant was born on November 25, 1960, in Augusta. Her family lived in Augusta while her father, Burton Grant, completed his residency there at the Medical College of Georgia (later Georgia Health Sciences University) after serving five years as an army doctor at Dwight Eisenhower Army Medical Center at Fort Gordon. Six months after she was born, Grant's parents moved her and her three older sisters to Nashville, Tennessee, where she spent the remainder of her childhood. Grant enrolled at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, for one year and then transferred to Vanderbilt University in Nashville. During her senior year at Vanderbilt she signed her first record deal with Myrrh/Word Records and released her self-titled first album in 1978.
The album established her as a strong voice in the Christian community, and she followed her success with My Father's Eyes (1979), Never Alone (1980), two concert albums in 1981, and Age to Age (1982). In 1982 she married songwriter Gary Chapman, who collaborated on her albums throughout the 1980s and early 1990s. During this time they had three children, Matthew Garrison in 1987, Gloria Mills ("Millie") in 1989, and Sarah Cannon in 1992.
Over the years Grant has performed at such varying places and events as the Grand Ole Opry, Monday Night Football, and Camp David, at the request of U.S. president George H. W. Bush. She has won several Grammy Awards and performed a song from her first crossover album, Heart in Motion (1991), at the Grammy ceremonies in 1992.
Heart in Motion was a pivotal album in Grant's career and remains the most successful thus far. Certified platinum after selling five million copies, it was her first recording to feature secular as well as Christian songs. Her next album, House of Love (1994), was also successful, and included a duet with the popular country music artist Vince Gill as the title track. The partnership of Grant and Gill marked the beginning of a trend in Grant's career of returning to her southern roots in country music.
In 1997 Grant released Behind the Eyes. In 1999 Grant and Chapman ended their marriage, and the following year Grant and Gill married. Grant gave birth to Corrina Grant in 2001, and she and her family continue to reside in the Nashville area. In 2002 Grant released Legacy. . .Hymns and Faith. The following year she released her first album of new material in six years, Simple Things, and was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame. In 2005 Grant released Rock of Ages. . .Hymns and Faith, which won a Grammy Award for Best Southern, Country, or Bluegrass Album.