A look back at When Life Gets Broken Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

Looking back at "When Life Gets Broken"
Thursday, Aug 24 @ 1:08 PM
Reflecting back on when I got the inspiration for When Life Gets Broken. I remember when that phrase, "when life gets broken" first popped into my mind and then dropped into my spirit... I remember asking Michael O'Brien after we had recorded the first 5 songs, "hey bro.. shouldn't we write a song called "When Life Gets Broken"?
I did a google search, just to make sure there wasn't already a song with that title. The search "when life gets broken" returned ZERO MATCHES. when life gets broken (without quotations) brought back FOUR. NONE of them used the exact phrase.
So, I knew we were onto something!

I remember going back and forth on lyrics with Michael O on the song. We wrote it by email and text. I had an idea and I had a melody.. and I'll never forget Michael saying, "when people are truly broken, you know what they need? They need to be comforted" A power ballad isn't as conducive as say a lullaby. And he had a melody that he believed was perfect.. it truly was almost like a lullaby..and it was absolutely the perfect melody. (even though we found out that some radio stations thought it was too slow.. so Kent Hooper went back and added some percussion loops which got the rest of the stations on board. ) I have since released that version to iTunes under "When Life Gets Broken (remix)

I also remember Michael and I talking about who would sing it. As many of you already know, I was experiencing extreme vocal distress during the recording of the CD. (which was a blessing in disguise as it opened the door for so many great artists to come onboard) Michael approached me with the idea of getting Russ Lee onboard to sing it with him. What an amazing duet! What an incredible voice!! And I remember watching as it slowly but surely climbed up the Billboard/R&R Soft AC charts, peaking all the way up at #6.

That in itself would be a great story.

But that's not where the story ends. Because Chance Scoggins (who had produced bgv's on Pickin' Up The Pieces) was producing an album for the legendary Sandi Patty and they needed one more song, Chance remembered When Life Gets Broken. He played it for Sandi who loved it. They recorded it (with Heather Payne formerly of Point of Grace) and it was the lead single from Sandi's DOVE Award winning CD, the Edge of the Divine" And in the months that followed, Sandi sang it at live events all over the country and around the world, not only with Heather, but notably with Natalie Grant.
I just did a google search 8 and a half years after the song was first released. Now, when you google "When Life Gets Broken", you get over 3000 results. (this is down significantly from when Sandi released her version of the song. I believe the most I ever saw in " " was around 15,000 exact matches. But when you just type in when life gets broken without quotations there are over 4 million matches.

Not to mention an advertising campaign from Krazy Glue of "When Life Gets Broken... BE A FIXER!"

And of all the videos of the song on YouTube, there are well over 1 million views.

To think, all of that... emanating from a divine inspiration given to a pastor of a small church in the DFW area. Who with the help of some very talented friends (Michael O'Brien, Russ Lee, Kent Hooper, Chance Scoggins )and an all powerful God, has seen that message spread literally around the world.

For sure, there have been much more popular and even better written songs throughout the years that have touched a much larger audience. BUT.. I am grateful to have played a small part in bringing hope to hurting people across the world because of a song that some really awesome people helped me with and then chose to share it with others who then shared it with their audiences... and so on.. and so on.. so amazing what our God can do when His body works TOGETHER!

#BlessedToBeABlessing #WhenLifeGetsBroken

posted by Matt on 08/24/2017

The meaning behind the songs... Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

I don't do this often. I prefer to leave blogging to true wordsmiths like my friend, Regie Hamm. I watched something this morning that inspired me to speak out. I am a songwriter, as are many of my brothers and sisters here on Indie Heaven.. as well as many who will read this. Moreover, I am a Christian who writes songs. The songs I write are intended to minister to anyone who hears them. That being said, the lyrics then are extremely important! Therefore, the source of the inspiration for the lyrics is even more important. I believe that every song that we represent as being "Christian" should be something that draws the listener to Christ in some way. Before you think I mean, that they need to all be 3 part sermons broken down in 3:30 thoughts, hear me out: There are actually two books included in the canon of Scripture that never mention God. The first is the book of Esther, a story of Jewish survival in the face of a sinister plot to eradicate the Jews. The second is the Song of Songs, also known as the Song of Solomon, which depending on translation MAY contain a veiled reference to God in 8:6 but is an extremely descriptive poem telling the story of the love between a young woman and a young man. And yet both are covered under 2 Timothy 3:16 "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,"

I saw a video where on national TV, a pastor is talking with an artist about a song which dealt with the theme of the program, "brokenness". He said, "when I hear a song like this, I know there must be a part of scripture that was the inspiration and foundation for this song", he then went on gave an example that came to his mind and quoted Psalms 34:18 "God is close to the brokenhearted" The artist fumbled around to respond and when innocently pressed, showed a rather embarrassing lack of knowledge of the Word. And I didn't call it "embarrassing" (though it was..) God did in 2 Timothy 2:15 "Study to show yourself approved to God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth." The artist then attempted to deflect it with humor and tell the pastor basically it was HIS job to know the Word.

Friends, it is OUR job to know the Word! Especially in the days we live in.. where down is up and wrong is right. God's Word is the only standard! And if we don't know it, how are we going to hold to it.. and be the light we need to be?

Don't worry, I'm not going to launch into a long winded dissertation about our responsibility to be people of the Word.. that is just a matter of fact. This blog is about songwriting and the inspiration behind what we pen. (although I will say that if "without faith it is impossible to please God" Heb 11:6; and "faith comes by hearing and hearing the Word of God) Rom 10:17) it should go without saying how crucial it is... ;-) )

If we are going to be CHRISTIAN SONGWRITERS and artists, we must heed Colossians 3:16 and "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God."

And we should be ready to share unashamedly "the reason for the hope we have with anyone who asks" (1 Peter 3:15)... as well as the reason for the song we wrote.

Just one man's opinion. I hope it challenges you.. if it torques you.. well, that was not my intention. :-D


posted by Matt Hybarger on 03/18/2015

wow.. 5 years since I blogged??? Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

This is funny. I read this recently.. (it has been copied and pasted verbatim in at least 4 different articles I have read on getting radio airplay.

"Don't bother sending your music to commercial stations blindly. They don't want to listen to your music let alone play the music on their station. To be honest, it really wouldn't matter much anymore if they did unless you've somehow made it into their tiny list of added music which means you'll be played like 50 times a week but that's why it's hard to listen to commercial stations... they play the same song 50 TIMES A WEEK.."

I recently was told by my radio promoter (who I highly recommend, not only as a great brother in the Lord, but as a first class pro) that Radio stations, specifically MD's and PD's "frown upon grass roots campaigns. (ie Requests, emails etc) I know for a fact that in some cases, it actually can cause them to NOT PLAY YOUR SONG!

I thought for a moment.. (since one particular individual works for a LISTENER SUPPORTED STATION) how ludicrous that was!! You don't want to hear what LISTENERS want to hear.. hmm.. who then shall you take your direction from?

Oh yeah.. THE LABELS! And why not.. that way, you can schmooze with the "stars", get a photo, get an autograph and play music that you can hear on every other station in town. Music that many times is NOT going to minister to your listeners in the same way that an INDIE song might..

When you look at the evolution of the music industry, during its heyday, it was DRIVEN by listeners who requested songs and kept tuned in ALL DAY to hear it. The key being they stayed tuned in all day!! Nowadays, that isn't necessary because they can hear it on 88.1, 90.1. 94.1, The Message, The Fish, and every other Christian station on the dial. Because HOT AC, AC, SOFT AC and INSPIRATIONAL formats are exactly the same.

You know who wins that battle? The station with the biggest advertising budget. You know who loses, the listener supported station who no longer has a ministry connection to their listeners. . the same listener who now gives up on radio altogether... and pops in the CD of their favorite artist into their CD player and listens to the music that blesses them that is no longer available on Mainstream radio. Another loser is the artists who isn't attached to the Machine anymore and therefore has little or no access to radio, therefore the Churches in that area have no idea that they are still doing music. I know personally that there are amazing artists like my dear friend Steve Archer who are STILL out there ministering in and producing great music. And yet, at times find difficulty booking dates because no one knows they are still around. It's absolutely mind boggling..

I am thankful for awesome stations that buck the current trend. Reporting stations like Faith Broadcasting in Montgomery, AL WECC in St. Mary's GA, KACS in Chehalis, WA and Moody radio in Chicago and big market stations like WMVV in Atlanta, GA who are willing to play great music regardless of if it's Label or Indie.

I have found that partnering with radio stations around the country, supporting their mission and teaming up to bring hope and encouragement to the listeners is a WIN WIN proposition!

I look forward to working Sharathon season with so many wonderful stations who place a premium on Ministry... and the Kingdom of God is enriched by the partnership.

Stay faithful and as Keith says, keep up the good faith-work!

posted by Matt on 09/30/2014

WHEN LIFE GETS BROKEN #9 on R&R Top 20! Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

We hit a high of #9 on the Radio and Records/Billboard Soft AC/Inspirational Chart back on June 15th

As of July 31st we are still hanging tough at #15.

Good to see that stations are embracing the message and the ministry

posted by Matt on 08/04/2009

A few more reviews/comments... Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

When Life Gets Broken
author: Trina Sharpe
I have never heard a song that was so moving! This song has brought so much hope and lets me know it's never too late and never too bad for God to step in and do a miracle. No matter what you've gone through, He is there and you can start over fresh. Part of the song talks about "there is nothing you have lost that He can't replace" and I thought "How do you 'replace' a loved one that has died?" You have to realize that your loved one is not 'lost'. They have taken a new 'position' in your life. God knows exactly where they are-so they are not 'lost'. This is a tremendous song and CD. Each song ministers in its own special anointing. I have already shared it to friends who have gone through tragedies and it has ministred to them as well.

When Life Gets Broken
author: John Saponari
An AWESOME collection of songs that can minister to anyone. The Hope which is found in Jesus Christ is proclaimed in this music from start to finish. Share this CD with those that are hurting, as well as with the Church!

Eyes on You
author: Nancy Dyer
My daughter, who is 7 yrs old, and I play this song over and over. We absolutely love it! "When Life Gets Broken" is also beautiful. I want to know when another CD is coming out

posted by Micah on 07/10/2009

Debut Single When Life Gets Broken climbs to #11 Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

When Life Gets Broken featuring Michael O'Brien & Russ Lee climbed to #11 on the CRW Signature Inspo Chart week of 5/11/09. Currently played on 16 reporting stations with an increase of 49 spins.

Looking to break into the Radio & Records Top 20 as soon as Wednesday May 20.

posted by Matt on 05/19/2009

Watching a song grow on the radio... Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

Having a song on the radio is cool.

Knowing that people.. all over the US and Canada, and even around the world are listening to something that you created is an awesome feeling. Especially when it is a song of hope and encouragement like When Life Gets Broken.

However, the ups and downs of promoting that song and watching it rise and fall can be a real experience. Charts, playlists and the whims of radio programmers are sometimes difficult to understand.

When Life Gets Broken which features Russ Lee & Michael O'Brien is my baby. A concept and vision birthed in my heart by the Lord and brought to life in a wonderful collaboration between myself and my good friend Michael O'Brien. The song was crafted to be a message of grace and peace to people everywhere who are hurting and broken. It debuted on the CRW Signature Inspo charts at #29 about 5 weeks ago. It then dropped to #34, then rose to #25, dropped to #37 and went back up to #26. Then this week we dropped to #33 and lost our two biggest stations... or did we?

I then found out that the stations have both re-added the song and are putting it in heavy rotation. It looks as if about 4-5 other stations who have been on the fence are also now on board and within a couple of weeks, we may in fact be sitting in the R&R Top 20.

As a result, there are several stations out there who are now interested in hosting When Life Gets Broken Events in their cities featuring the music and ministry behind the CD.

It is so interesting watching the machinations of the Christian radio business and how God can take a simple Independent song and allow it to share the stage so to speak with songs by famous artists who are backed by labels with far more status than a "church project" could ever wield.

I am so thankful for God's favor and blessing. And the gift of music..

posted by Matt on 04/22/2009

REVIEW OF WHEN LIFE GETS BROKEN Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

When Life Gets Broken
Amazing! These guys are incredible

When Life Gets Broken by Matt Hybarger & Kaleo is a collection of 11 songs; 8 originals and 3 remakes that share a common message of encouragement through life's greatest challenges.
It is easily the best CD I have heard in some time. Matt Hybarger is a newcomer to Christian Music and he makes his debut in a big way! Not only with great songs produced by Michael O'Brien formerly of Newsong, but he has collaborated with some of the best and brightest names in Christian Music both past and present.

This standout debut includes guest appearances by O'Brien, Russ Lee, The Katinas, Clay Crosse, Allen Asbury and in a nod to the legacy of CCM, Steve Archer, David & The Giants and Kellye Huff.

This CD is mostly duets with the exception of the powerful Run To His Arms by Hybarger, I Call on You Jesus by Clay Crosse and a remake of Somebody Cares by O'Brien. All 11 songs are great in their own way, but the standouts have to be Never Alone, a duet featuring Hybarger & Kellye Huff, The title cut, which features Russ Lee and O'Brien in a song that in my book is a new classic, and there is a brand new version of an old classic, Through His Eyes Of Love with Steve Archer and O'Brien bringing the 1984 chart topper into 2009.

When Life Gets Broken features a little bit of everything in terms of style. From high energy Pop like Eyes On You written by Hybarger, O'Brien and Regie Hamm (2008 American Idol Songwriting Winer) to Gospel in I Call On You Jesus and even Rock with World Taken Care Of. I highly recommend this CD to anyone who is a fan of great Christian music.

-RJ Ford

posted by Matt on 03/21/2009

Press Release When Life Gets Broken Subscribe To My Blog (RSS)(Click this icon to Subscribe)

Matt Hybarger & Kaleo

Unpleasant realities of the world we live in. Even as believers, we are not exempt from the sorrows that life may bring... but as children of God we have HOPE... and that hope is in Jesus Christ.

Many are limping through valleys of grief or loss that can leave us wondering if life will ever be the same. These thoughts are not uncommon... and they are understandable.

Jesus Himself said in John 16:33 (NLT) "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world."

This is the heart of WHEN LIFE GETS BROKEN. A poignant reminder that even in the darkest of times, we have been promised that we are never alone, He is always with us and that if we will "get a glimpse of Jesus" and turn to Him, He will help us start all over again.

Russ Lee and Michael O'Brien beautifully communicate this timely message in the title track from the upcoming CD, WHEN LIFE GETS BROKEN.

A collection of songs crafted by Matt Hybarger and Producer Michael O'Brien featuring some of the best known names in Christian Music both past and present.

God's message of hope and help is communicated in several genres of music by an eclectic group of outstanding singers.

The CD includes

EYES ON YOU an energetic tune featuring MICHAEL O'BRIEN, reminding us that even when things seem to be slipping away, we can know where we're headed by simply keeping our eyes on Jesus. The song was written by 2008 American Idol songwriter winner, REGIE HAMM, Michael O'Brien & Matt Hybarger

PICKING UP THE PIECES a brand new, updated sound to the ARCHERS classic. Featuring ALLEN ASBURY

RUN TO HIS ARMS this song by MATT HYBARGER makes the simple statement that regardless of what may have caused our brokenness, whether it was sin, or outside circumstances, the answer is the same... run to Jesus.

WHEN LIFE GETS BROKEN a gentle melody with powerful lyrics and beautiful harmonies featuring RUSS LEE & MICHAEL O'BRIEN to encourage all who are facing grief that Jesus is right there with you and knows just what you need.

CALL ON YOU JESUS an R&B/Gospel exhortation to call on the Name above all Names in your time of need. Featuring CLAY CROSSE.

THROUGH HIS EYES OF LOVE Voted as one of CCM's All Time Classics, STEVE ARCHER's signature ballad is given a brand new life 25 years later in a beautiful duet with MICHAEL O'BRIEN.

NEVER ALONE This outstanding new duet features MATT HYBARGER and KELLYE HUFF with another reminder that no matter where we find ourselves, we are never alone.

SOMEBODY CARES a new R&B style remake of the MICHAEL O'BRIEN song.

WHEN YOU COME TO THE CROSS Matt Hybarger prompts us to remember what Jesus meant when He said "whosoever will believe" as we take the Gospel to the world.

THIS IS MY STORY THE KATINAS hit this new version of an old standard out of the park! The seamless harmonies and soaring leads bring new life to this timeless classic.

HE'S GOT THE WORLD TAKEN CARE OF DAVID & THE GIANTS join with Matt Hybarger to bring this CD to a rocking conclusion with the statement that no matter what, God is in control!

Contained within these 11 songs is a constant reminder, based on the Apostle Paul's words to the church at Rome.
We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
"Don't worry; it will all work out," can ring hollow when life's torrents come crashing down upon us.
But that is exactly when we truly need to stop and reflect on the truth they offer us that God is always with us even... when life gets broken.

posted by Matt on 02/03/2009