Book Of John

Album: Two Lanes of Freedom (2013)

Songfacts®:

  • This bittersweet ballad finds McGraw singing of a family going through a journal of their late patriarch. The take on mortality in a theme that McGraw has visited before with such cuts as "Live Like You Were Dying."
  • John Nite and Greg Becker penned the song and McGraw told Billboard magazine that when he first heard the demo he was reduced to tears. "For me, that song was cathartic," he said. "I don't have a deep reservoir of father/son relationships, I don't really have any sort of a well to draw from. I didn't have a dad, really. With my step-dad early on, it was a very chaotic, abusive world I was living in. And not knowing my real dad until older in life, we'd never really developed a strong relationship. You hear people talk about father/son relationships and what that song talks about, I can't comprehend it, and I really want it so bad. So that song to me is really intriguing for that reason."
  • It was Missy Gallimore, the wife of producer Byron Gallimore, who sent McGraw the song's demo. He recalled to Taste of Country: "I had it on my iPhone. I remember sitting at my kitchen table, there's some woods out in the backyard, and I was looking across the woods and the song really hit me hard. It was just one of those songs that sort of flooded you with emotion. It was just a guitar and a vocal. I knew instantly I wanted to record it. I just had a great connection with that song."

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