The Story Behind Mary, Did You Know?
"Mary, Did You Know?" is a contemporary Christmas song directed towards Mary, mother of Jesus, with lyrics penned by Mark Lowry in 1984, and music composed by Buddy Greene in 1991.
Mark Lowery's song idea came to while working on a Christmas Program in 1984. He recalled a conversation he had with his own mother about Jesus' birth where she said, "If anyone on earth knew for sure that Jesus was virgin born--Mary knew!" Mark spent the next seven years tweaking his lyrics and thinking about what he would have asked Mary if he'd met her. Then in 1991, he asked a friend, Buddy Greene, to write music to accompany his lyrics.
Buddy thought about what the music should be for about two weeks before the answer hit him. He sat down to write and the music flowed. He finished in a mere 30 minutes.
It was first recorded by Christian recording artist Michael English on his self-titled debut solo album in 1991. At the time, English and Lowry were part of the Gaither Vocal Band, and Greene was touring with them. The song reached Number 6 on CCM Magazine's Adult Contemporary Chart. Lowry would record the song several times himself, most notably with the Gaither Vocal Band on their 1998 Christmas album, Still the Greatest Story Ever Told.
This song has since gone on to become a modern Christmas classic, performed by hundreds of artists over the years, across various genres. It has since gone on to be one of the most beloved modern Christmas songs. Many famous musicians have gone on to record it. Here are a few of our favorites!