Faith Hill, ‘American Heart’ – Lyrics Uncovered
Songwriters Jim Beavers and Jonathan Singleton paid close attention to real-life world scenarios when penning Faith Hill‘s ‘American Heart’ lyrics, hoping to create a solid tune with a powerful message.
“Jonathan and I were writing not long after the tornadoes ripped through Alabama in the spring of 2011,” Beavers recalls to Taste of Country. “We were online looking at some of the devastation footage. We saw a news story where they were interviewing survivors, and we noticed how optimistic most of them were. Volunteers were pitching in, donations were coming in… So we started talking about how great it would be if we could write a song that honored that kind of spirit.”
“She’s up before the sun, on the run / Another dollar, another day, another cup of coffee / Thank you Lord for giving me one more / She still leans on her dreams but it seems / Sometimes she’s the only one who still believes / That life is hard, so she takes it on with an American Heart,” they wrote in the opening lyrics.
“I don’t think either one of us had ever tried to write an ‘America’ song before,” notes Beavers. “They are really hard to pull off without getting a little cheesy. Thankfully, we found an angle we really liked when one of us said, ‘you can’t break an American Heart.’ Jonathan came up with that cool angle of how an ‘American Heart’ has these strong qualities that can be represented by different regions.”
“It beats like a drum down in New Orleans / Sings like a Motown melody / It dreams like California / Bigger than a Texas sky / It bleeds, it scorns, but it shines when times get hard / You can’t break an American heart,” Hill sings in the ‘American Heart’ chorus.
“We wrote the chorus very quickly,” Beavers remembers of penning the lyrics. “We demoed the song, and Faith heard it, loved it and cut it within a week or two. That was a very fast turnaround. We’re really proud of the song and especially how much Faith believes in it. Her vocal performance made it sound immediately classic.”