Joey Feek is in hospice care, living out her last days at home with husband Rory Feek and their daughter, Indiana. Despite her bleak future, the country/bluegrass duo better known as Joey + Rory will release a new album on Valentine’s Day. Joey Feek might not live to see its release, but the songs on the album are dear to her heart.
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Rory Feek announced the upcoming album via his blog, where he has painstakingly detailed his wife’s demise, and the strong faith that has grounded them both.
“The one she’s always wanted to make–filled with the hymns she grew up with,” he explained. ” We recorded it in a studio in Nashville early in the summer–just after recovering from her first big surgery in Chicago. And then she did her vocals where she could…in hotel rooms, our house, wherever and whenever she felt up to singing.”
“In early October, we even did a TV taping of the songs in the concert hall at our farm in front of a live audience,” he continued. “Joey was weak and it was difficult for her, but she was determined. This record means so much to her. It is the songs that are the most important to her.”
“I think Joey wants to capture the words and music of her childhood,” Rory Feek added. “The music that she goes to when she needs comfort. The music that makes this beautiful, tragic, crazy life somehow make sense. I think she wants to capture this music so we can take it home with us.”
“Softly and Tenderly” serves as an example of the music Joey + Rory fans have come to love, and of the music that will appear on their upcoming album.
Joey Feek has endured many bittersweet moments since entering hospice care. Rory’s daughters, Hopie and Heidi, came to spend time with their stepmom, as have dear friends and additional family members.
“Her friends gathered around her on the couch and she told them of her hope that she might be able to still be here for Christmas, or for Indiana’s second birthday in February,” Rory Feek says in his blog. “Joey’s hope never fades. No amount of pain or medicine can touch it. It runs too deep. It’s connected to her faith in God. And as she will tell you, God can do anything.”
One of Joey Feek’s last and most poignant interviews was with The Tennesseean. In it she shared that she fears nothing in the face of death.
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“I pray that one morning I just don’t wake up,” she said. “But I don’t fear anything because I’m so close to God and we’ve talked about it so many times. I know he’s close. And I know he loves me. I’m really at peace. I still believe there’s healing in prayer.”
This upcoming Joey + Rory album will no doubt serve as a blessing to those left behind after Joey Feek passes. She and Rory still pray for a miracle–that she might live to see this album’s release, and enjoy more precious time with her family.
The album will one day be a treasure–filled with Joey Feek’s heart and soul–long after she’s gone.