The melody of this song comes from an instrumental piano piece called "Heartstrings," written by the Norwegian composer Rolf Løvland. Streisand asked the singer/songwriter Ann Hampton Callaway, who had written Streisand's Higher Ground
track "At the Same Time," to write lyrics to the melody so she could record it for her A Love Like Ours
Callaway first tried to write around the title "Heartstrings," but Streisand wasn't happy with the results, calling the lyrics "Too literal." In our interview with Callaway
, she explained: "I was having a lot of frustration writing a lyric with a very simple melody. It's harder to write lyrics to a simple melody than other types of melodies, so finally I decided: I knew she was getting married that year, so I would write a wedding song.
What I didn't know was that she was getting married three days later. I wrote this song just in the nick of the time and she got the song three hours before she was getting married and sang it at her wedding reception and recorded it on A Love Like Ours
. It's actually on six of her CDs and earned me my second platinum award, which was a big honor."