Behind The Song: The Eli Young Band’s ACM-Nominated ‘Even If It Breaks Your Heart’
The Eli Young Band was handed an awesome surprise at last year’s Academy of Country Music Awards, when their hit “Crazy Love” was awarded Song of the Year. And at this year’s ACM Awards, the four bandmates (Mike Eli, Jon Jones, Chris Thompson, and James Young) have a solid chance of repeating that success–perhaps even twice over, as their Number One single “Even If It Breaks Your Heart” has been nominated for both Song of the Year and Single Record of the Year.
It was “a song that we really believed in, that we felt told out story,” Jon Jones told Radio.com about “Breaks Your Heart.” “We didn’t know if it was going to work on country radio because it’s such a passion song about playing music. And we were really lucky that people latched onto it and put themselves in the song.”
“Even If It Breaks Your Heart” was the Texas group’s second consecutive Number One country single, topping charts last July. (They had a third later that year, too, with their self-proclaimed “sappy love song” ”Say Goodnight.”)
Appearing on the group’s 2011 album Life at Best, “Breaks Your Heart” was written by Will Hoge and and Eric Paslay. (Paslay cowrote “Barefoot Blue Jean Nights” for Jake Owen and “Angel Eyes” for Love & Theft, among other songs, while Hoge has spent years as both a writer and recording artist, with a long string of independent album releases under his belt.)
As Mike Eli told Radio.com, the EYB members initially heard “Break Your Heart” on one of Hoge’s own albums. “When we talked about making the next record, that song just popped up. We knew right away that we wanted to put it on [our] record. Once it crossed our mind, we couldn’t get our brain off of it.”