The Old Rugged Cross was written in 1912 by George Bennard after his conversion to the Salvation Army Church. It has been a popular hymn over the last 100 years and has been covered by a number of artsits (oh yes, even the King!). In the Trad. Jazz idiom it works great as an easy ballad or in a Spiritual service. Its a haunting, yet warming story throughout: “In that Old Rugged Cross, stained with blood so divine, a wondrous beauty I see, for ’twas on the old cross Jesus suffered and died, to pardon and sanctify me.” We like to see it with the band harmonized on the melody off the top and then let the vocalist tell the tale.