Only in Your Heart

Album: Homecoming (1973)
Charted: 62

Songfacts®:

  • This song, written and sung by Gerry Beckley, finds him comforting a girl named Mary, telling her to find another man to replace the one she has lost, and letting her know that she has support.

    In our interview with Beckley, he explained: "We had a friend in England, where we lived when we first got started. His name was Hank, and he was having a problem with his relationship, and his partner - they weren't married - was named Mary. And that's the only real connection that I can remember. It certainly isn't some verbatim story about a scenario that was going on, but I just remember how we'd pick up these little pieces from everything that surrounds you, and that was basically the start."
  • A little over two minutes into this song, it breaks down and the instruments come back in backwards. America had just three members (two after 1977 when Dan Peek left), so they would use session players on their albums. On this track, Joe Osborn played bass and Hal Blaine played drums - these guys were part of the Los Angeles first-call team that played on classic songs by the likes of The Beach Boys, Simon & Garfunkel, and The Monkees.

    Gerry Beckley credits Blaine with sparking the idea for this unusual section, since after they had recorded the song as planned, Blaine did a big drum fill and explained that there was more space in the song to explore. "It was just a great moment: Hal doing the big fill, and saying, 'Hey, I feel I can play a bit more on this tune,'" said Beckley. "And then we added to it - we put all the backwards instruments and stuff to make it interesting. But it shows you the kind of magic that can happen given the right circumstances."
  • The backwards instrumentation is reminiscent of certain Beatles songs where they did similar studio tricks - "Rain" and "Strawberry Fields Forever" come to mind. A year after their Homecoming album was released, America started working with Beatles producer George Martin, who worked on their albums Holiday and Hearts.

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