This is a song of blistering heartbreak, as Braxton sings to her former lover, begging him to return to her and undo all the pain he has caused. It was written by Diane Warren, who creates very emotional songs with big, hooky choruses and titles that tell a story in just a few words: "I Don't Want To Miss A Thing," "Why Did You Have To Be," "Save Up All Your Tears." Warren was surprised the phrase "Un-Break My Heart" hadn't been used as a title before.
On the UK show Songbook, Diane Warren explained that she knew the song was a winner when she came up with the title and started to work it out, but the woman who sang it felt differently. Said Warren: "Toni Braxton hated that song. She didn't want to do it. And then after she had a hit with it she told me she didn't want another one of those."
This song was a massive hit, spending 11 weeks at #1 in the US and winning Braxton a Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Legal issues and a bankruptcy filing kept Braxton from capitalizing on the success of this song, and she didn't release another album until 2000 with The Heat.
Shanice Wilson, who had a big hit in 1991 with "I Love Your Smile," sang backup on this track.
Based on chart performance this is Diane Warren's most successful song in the US as a songwriter.
This topped the charts in a number of other countries including Sweden, Switzerland and Austria.