Put Your Hand in the Hand

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"Put Your Hand in the Hand"
Ocean - Put Your Hand in the Hand single.jpg
Single by Ocean
from the album Put Your Hand in the Hand
B-side"Tear Down the Fences"
ReleasedMarch 1971
GenrePop, gospel
Length2:52 – Single Edit
3:53 – Album Cut
LabelKama Sutra
Songwriter(s)Gene MacLellan
Producer(s)Greg Brown, Ocean
Ocean singles chronology
"Put Your Hand in the Hand"
"Deep Enough for Me"

"Put Your Hand in the Hand" is a gospel pop song composed by Gene MacLellan and first recorded by Canadian singer Anne Murray from her third studio album Honey, Wheat and Laughter.

It became a hit single for the Canadian band Ocean, released as the title track to their debut album. The single peaked at No. 2 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, kept from No.1 by Joy to the World by Three Dog Night.[1] The song also reached number four on the Adult Contemporary chart.[2] The single version omitted the instrumental, that occurs between the second chorus and the second verse, as well as the repeat of the chorus and the final instrumentalist chorus, that ends without the fade. It went on to become 22nd best-seller of 1971.

After MacLellan's suicide in 1995, his friend and fellow Atlantic Canadian musician Ron Hynes wrote the song "Godspeed" as a tribute, the lyrics for which reference the title of this song.[3]

Track listing[edit]

7" single

A1 "Put Your Hand in the Hand" – 2:52
A2 "Tear Down the Fences" – 2:53

Cover versions[edit]

The song was also covered in the 1970s by a number of other performers, including Elvis Presley (who also covered MacLellan's "Snowbird"), Randy Stonehill, Frankie Laine, Donny Hathaway, Joan Baez, Dutch group Himalaya, the Les Humphries Singers, and a German-language version ("Ich fand eine Hand") [I Found a Hand] by Cindy & Bert.

Bing Crosby recorded the song for his 1972 album Bing 'n' Basie.

Evangelist Garner Ted Armstrong covered the song in a January 1976 episode of Hee Haw. Country acts Sandy Posey, Lynn Anderson, Loretta Lynn, and The Oak Ridge Boys also recorded the song.

South African singer Ray Dylan recorded a cover on his album Goeie Ou Country - Op Aanvraag.[4]

Later uses[edit]

  • In a 1991 episode of the sitcom Family Matters titled "Choir Trouble", the cast was singing the song in their church as part of their Gospel Fest.
  • The song was used in the 2013 film Prisoners.
  • The song was used in a 2017 episode of US television series Last Man Standing titled “Take Me to Church”


  1. ^ https://www.billboard.com/charts/hot-100/1971-05-01
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–1993. Record Research. p. 178.
  3. ^ "Godspeed (Ron Hynes) tabs, videos". Wtv-zone.com. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-06-06. Retrieved 2014-03-28.