Country music singer Randall King has released a contemplative version of the hymn "I'll Fly Away." The song not only has become an instant favorite among fans, but it brings a new appreciation of our hope in heaven and in Jesus Christ. King was inspired to record after the death of his own grandfather and his own sister. King's version of "I'll Fly Away" appears on his Leanna EP, released in late 2020.
"For me, that song is in a whole different place," King shares. "... I find peace in a little bit slower, sadder music. There's something to slowing down and taking a deep breath, and I think that's what that song does ... It makes everything more real, you know?"
King first performed the hymn at the funeral of his grandfather, who died of Alzheimer's. After his grandfather's death, however, King wrote his 2018 release "When He Knows Me," and during one soundcheck, he found a way to intertwine that song with his version of "I'll Fly Away." King perforned the song again after his sister Leanna died. Leanna died in April of 2020, at the age of 32.
Listen to "I'll Fly Away" here.
"I didn't know that that was going to be the song that I sing her home to Jesus to, but when she passed, she was in the ICU, and me and all my family were gathered around an oak tree - only my dad could be in there [with her]," King recalls. "He sort of put us on speakerphone, laid it by her head. Me and the whole family sang gospel songs for about 45 minutes, and then we get into that song, and that's when she went."
"Everything she did, she was always looking out for me: 'Don't do that, Randall - you'll get in trouble,'" shares King, adding that he "did it anyway."
"She was beautiful person inside and out. She cared more about others than she did herself ... even as a kid," he continues. "She was a big reason that I love music. She's a lot of my self-confidence: Everything that I would do, I would I would look to her to see her reaction on it ... So she was she's very special person to me, and she was very beautiful. And this EP really reflects her."