Chris Cagle + I Breathe In, I Breathe Out


Riley Johnson


April 17, 2024


April 17, 2024


April 17, 2024

Released in September 2001, I Breathe In and Breathe Out became the highlight of the American Country artist Chris Cagle’s career. The smash hit was initially recorded by David Kersh in 1998, but Cagle’s rendition became a smash hit when the song peaked at No. 1 in the U.S. Billboard Country Music and No. 35 on the 2002 Billboard Hot 100.

Cagle’s traditional country sound garnered massive success and solidified his notable presence in the country music industry. His debut album heralded his legacy and laid the groundwork for his gold-certified albums, such as Chris Cagle and Anywhere but Here. 

Meaning Behind the Song

The song starts with high-pitched piano notes and a lilting fiddle accompaniment with lyrics that then talk about a man dealing with the heartbreaking end of a relationship. Chris Cagle expresses how he patiently waits for his ex-partner to come around every day for a second chance, showing his inconsolable yearning for a lingering thought that she can never be replaced. His poignant lyrical composition exposes the profound grief and sadness of a relationship falling apart.

Directed by Eric Welch, Cagle’s music video conveys a potent message of a sentimental attachment to a woman he once loved. It opens up with him leaving his pickup truck and walking up to a restaurant, where people behind him gossip about his breakup. 

At the end of the video, a woman with a boy fades into the background, signifying his deep romantic bond to a familiar connection is long gone. He points out how a breakup can put you through circles to move on and that all you can do is take one day at a time to carry on.

With its country-rock nostalgia, I Breathe In and Breathe Out emphasized Cagle’s simple yet intimate lyrics of a break-up that anyone can relate to. Jam to the moving ballad and watch the music video below.


Chris Cagle



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