In 2002, country music band Diamond Rio released “I Believe” as the second single off their album Completely.
The song became another No. 1 hit for the band as it climbed to the top spot of Billboard Hot Country Songs. It also reached No. 31 in the Billboard Hot 100.
Written by Skip Ewing and Donny Kees, “I Believe” tells the tale of the man suffering from the death of a loved one, at the same time believing that the soul of the departed is still watching over him.
“And with all my heart, I’m sure, we’re closer than we ever were. I don’t have to hear or see, I’ve got all the proof I need. There are more than angels watching over me. I believe, oh I believe,” the song goes.
The Story Behind The Song
Skip Ewing can still clearly remember the night he wrote “I Believe.” The song was actually the very first one he wrote with his new acoustic piano that he had always wanted. Erwing, feeling the thrill of using the new instrument, stayed up most of the night just to play every note on that piano.
He pushed the sustain pedal, let it go, and then pushed it once again.
“And it just sounded to me like the notes and the music, everything I invited to sing on that piano, they continued,” Erwing explained. “And I realized that when we invite a note to sing, it sings for a long time. Even after you take your hand off the key, it’s still singing. And that made an impression upon me about the way people are, especially souls that have touched us in our lives.”
Erwing went on writing the classical piece. “I wanted it to feel as though it was inviting something down to Earth. The actual theme of the music, the right-hand theme of the piano,” he said.
The following day, Donny Kees came over, and Erwing shared with him all his overnight-thoughts through his “somewhat sleepy eyelids” – to which Kees responded by narrating what was exactly going on with his mother and his family.
Right then and there, Erwing immediately knew how to proceed. He started by developing an excellent understanding of what they want to say, to whom they’re going to say it, and about whom they’re speaking.
Indeed, you can say that the two songwriters had a wonderful conversation and experience together just by talking about how someone can touch us in our lives.
“In the lyric, it says, ‘When we die, our life goes on, it doesn’t end here when we’re gone.’ That’s one of the ways that we continue,” Erwing said. “But I think that energies are put into play a number of ways. Someone can have been a part of your life for a short time, you may never meet that person again, that doesn’t mean that they’re gone from the world, but it also means that maybe part of what they offered you still has a great deal of presence in your life, and makes a difference. And that’s what we wrote that song about.” The rest was history.
You can listen to “I Believe” in the video below.
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