I Had A Dream

Album: released as a single (1968)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • Pat Boone wrote this song in tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. after learning the civil rights leader had been shot and killed in Memphis on April 4, 1968. Boone told the story in a Songfacts interview:

    "I was in Washington, DC the night Martin Luther King was assassinated. I sat up all night, watching all the horrific TV reports, but also, the replays - over and over - of his most famous and moving speeches. It was a very emotional time for all of us. And for me. The next day, I was flying home, and on the plane, I had my face against the window, because I was tearful and his powerful words kept running through my mind. And I was thinking, 'What a sensational man this is, and has been.' I thought, 'There needs to be a song.'

    And before I got off the plane that day - to LA - I had written a song to a gospel melody. Of course, Martin Luther King was a reverend, a minister, and he was preaching. One of his most famous sermons was in a church. If not the night before, very shortly before he was killed, he said, 'I have been to the mountain top, I may not get to go there with you, but the Lord has been taking me up in his right hand, and let me see into the promised land. I may not go with you, but you will come, one day, you will go into the promised land.' So, I thought, 'Those words need to be immortalized in music,' and I recorded the song."
  • The original 1968 release was produced by Jimmy Bowen and had a country feel that Boone felt didn't suit the song. In 2008, after Barack Obama was elected President, Boone recorded a new version with a gospel feel. This one was produced by Michael B. Sutton, who had done work for The Originals and Cheryl Lynn. He also sang on the track along with Brenda Turner and Angie Whitney.
  • Boone premiered a video, featuring footage of Martin Luther King, Jr., when he hosted the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) "Living The Dream" celebration of King on January 19, 2009, the day before Obama was inaugurated.
  • This appeared on the soundtrack to the 2009 film Becoming Barack - Evolution of a Leader.

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Oliver Leiber

Oliver LeiberSongwriter Interviews

Oliver Leiber talks about writing and producing hits for Paula Abdul, and explains his complicated relationship with his father, the songwriter Jerry Leiber.

George Harrison

George HarrisonFact or Fiction

Did Eric Clapton really steal George's wife? What's the George Harrison-Monty Python connection? Set the record straight with our Fact or Fiction quiz.

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"They're Playing My Song

Gramm co-wrote this gorgeous ballad and delivered an inspired vocal, but the song was the beginning of the end of his time with Foreigner.

Yacht Rock Quiz

Yacht Rock QuizFact or Fiction

Christopher Cross with Deep Purple? Kenny Loggins in Caddyshack? A Fact or Fiction all about yacht rock and those who made it.

Rickie Lee Jones

Rickie Lee JonesSongwriter Interviews

Rickie Lee Jones on songwriting, social media, and how she's handling Trump.

Prince

PrinceFact or Fiction

Prince is shrouded in mystery, making him an excellent candidate for Fact or Fiction. Is he really a Scientologist? Does he own an exotic animal?