Broken (Lifehouse song)

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"Broken"
Single by Lifehouse
from the album Who We Are
Released July 8, 2008
Format Digital download
Genre Pop, rock, adult alternative
Length 4:15 (New/Radio Version)
4:46 (Album Version)
Label Geffen
Writer(s) Federico Scoot, Jason Wade
Producer(s) John Fields, Scott Faircloff
Lifehouse singles chronology
"Whatever It Takes"
(2007)
"Broken"
(2008)
"Halfway Gone"
(2009)

"Broken" is a song by American alternative band Lifehouse. It is the third single released from their fourth studio album, Who We Are (2007). The song was written by Federico Scott and Jason Wade, who was inspired to write the song after he visited a friend in Nashville who needed a kidney transplant. "Broken" was first released with the band's fourth studio album Who We Are on June 18, 2007. The song was then edited for radio to give it more of a "rock" feel. The new radio version of the song was released via digital download on July 8, 2008.

The song received positive reviews from critics, as they applauded the use of instruments in the song. The song charted at number 83 and 84 in the United States and Canada respectively, and later charted in New Zealand at number 21. The song's music video premiered on VH1.com on September 16, 2008. It is set in the scene of a tunnel where Wade is walking away in the opposite direction of a car crash. Lifehouse has played "Broken" live on several occasions, including on Soundstage and at the 2011 Pinkpop Festival in the Netherlands.

Background, release and composition[edit]

Lifehouse lead singer Jason Wade sings the main chorus of the song.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

The song was written by Federico Scott (who was 13 years old at the time) and Jason Wade, who originally finished the song in a hotel room after he visited a friend in Nashville who needed a kidney transplant.[1][2] It was produced by John Fields and Scott Faircloff.[3] In an interview with Alternative Addiction, Wade said, "Broken is the song that moves me the most. I wrote it in Nashville, about 6 months ago. I was in my hotel room at 3 AM, I was out there visiting a friend... he’s really sick, he needs a kidney transplant."[4] Furthermore he said, "That [the] song just kinda fell in my lap, and I really haven’t written a song like that since 'Hanging by a Moment' where it just happened within a 15 minute time period."[4] Broken was released as the third single from the album on June 18, 2007.[5] The song was then edited for radio to give it more of a "rock" feel and was released via digital download on July 8, 2008.[6][7]

"Broken" was described as a pop-rock song with influences of adult alternative.[8][9] According to the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, the song is set in common time with a slow tempo of 69 beats per minute.[10] It is composed in the key of C major with Wade's vocal range spanning from the low-note of G3 to the high-note of G5.[10] The song has a basic chord progression of F2–Am7–F2–Am7–F2–Am7–C/G–G.[10] Alex Lai of Contactmusic.com described as a song "[that] features great string use and takes a tender tone".[11] A review from Alternative Addiction said that the song was one of the best Wade has ever written and noted "[that] the more you listen to it, the better it gets."[12]

Chart performance[edit]

In the United States, "Broken" debuted at number 95 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the week of November 8, 2008.[13] It fluctuated on the chart for several weeks, before reaching its peak of 83.[14] The song debuted at number 70 on the Billboard Digital Songs chart and peaked at number 38 after being on the chart for three non-consecutive weeks.[15] On the Billboard Adult Pop Songs chart, the song debuted at number 38 for the week of August 2, 2008 and after moving around the chart for 32 consecutive weeks, the song eventually peaked at number seven.[16]

The song also managed to chart internationally. "Broken" debuted at number 92 on the Canadian Hot 100 for the week of January 26, 2008.[13] On July 26, 2008, the song reappeared in the chart and peaked at number 84.[17] It debuted at number 40 on the New Zealand Singles Chart for the week of May 26, 2008.[18] After being on the chart for 13 consecutive weeks, the song eventually peaked at number 21.[18]

Promotion[edit]

Music video[edit]

Lifehouse lead singer Jason Wade looks on the scene of a deadly car crash.

The music video for "Broken" was filmed on August 24, 2008 in Los Angeles and was directed by Kiefer Sutherland and Frank Borin.[19] It first premiered on VH1.com on September 16, 2008.[20] Wade and Sutherland then appeared together on the VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown on September 20, 2008 to debut the music video on VH1.[20] In an interview with Ultimate Guitar, Wade described his experience with working with Sutherland by saying, "Whilst listening to the song a little while back, Kiefer came up with the video's concept. Working with him was a great experience; with all of the expressions and very moments, Kiefer was extremely hands on. With him handling direction, acting in the music video was extremely easy."[21]

The video starts with Wade in the drivers seat of a car, with the other members of Lifehouse in the car with him. The traffic is at a stand still in a tunnel, as a swarm of people have abandoned their vehicles and are walking through. Wade and the band members get out of the car, and begin walking in the opposite direction of the crowd to the other side of the tunnel. Wade pushes through the people, who are in a rush to get to the entrance of the tunnel and is constantly focused on his destination to get to the end. When he reaches the tunnel's end, he sees the wreckage of a car crash with firefighters and paramedics cleaning up the mess. Wade then sees a girl observing what appears to be herself, dead inside one of the crashed car. He then looks to the left, and sees an old man observing himself, dead on the ground. As Wade looks into the other car, he sees himself, also seemingly dead. Upon this, he frantically runs back into the tunnel towards his car. He sees himself in the car with the band members, however everyone seems to be frozen as he bangs on the windows. Suddenly he's inside the car again, and a police officer comes to the window to motion him to continue driving, since he is stopped in the middle of the tunnel for no apparent reason.

Live performances[edit]

Lifehouse performed "Broken" along with other songs on Nissan Live Sets on Yahoo! Music in 2007.[22] On October 15, 2007, Lifehouse performed an acoustic version of the song on VH1.[23] In January 2008, the band performed the song as part of a set list on the PBS show Soundstage.[24] The song was also performed live at the 2011 Pinkpop Festival on June 11, 2011, as part of a set list of songs at the festival.[25]

Media appearances[edit]

"Broken" was featured on General Hospital, Criminal Minds, Grey's Anatomy[26] and One Tree Hill.[27]

The song was used in the trailer for The Time Traveler's Wife.

Cover versions[edit]

Daniel Evans, a finalist on series 5 of The X Factor (UK) recorded a mellow contemporary version and was a standout track on his 2013 iTunes EP "Reflections"

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits and personnel adapted from Allmusic.[28]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2008–2009) Peak
position
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[29] 84
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[30] 21
US Billboard Hot 100[31] 83
US Adult Top 40 (Billboard)[32] 7

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References[edit]

  1. ^ "Broken". Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  2. ^ "Lifehouse – Biography, Photos, News, Videos, Reviews and Tour Dates and Tickets". Contactmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-07-12. 
  3. ^ "Lifehouse – Who We Are (CD, Album) at Discogs". Discogs. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  4. ^ a b "Lifehouse : News: Lifehouse Announces A Third Single". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  5. ^ "Lifehouse Releases "Who We Are"". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-06-18. 
  6. ^ "Lifehouse : News: "Broken" Available on iTunes". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  7. ^ "Broken (New / Radio Version – Single by Lifehouse –". Apple Inc. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  8. ^ "Broken (New / Radio Version – Single by Lifehouse". Apple Inc. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  9. ^ "Broken by Lifehouse". Yahoo! Inc. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  10. ^ a b c "Lifehouse – Broken Sheet Music (Digital Download)". Sony/ATV Music Publishing. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  11. ^ "Who We Are Album Review". Contactmusic.com. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  12. ^ "Review of "Who We Are" by Lifehouse". Alternative Addiction LLC. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  13. ^ a b "Broken – Lifehouse". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  14. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History (Billboard Hot 100)". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-06-23. 
  15. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History (Digital Songs)". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  16. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  17. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History (Canadian Hot 100)". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  18. ^ a b "charts.org.nz – Lifehouse – Broken". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2011-07-16. 
  19. ^ "Lifehouse : News: The Making of "Broken"". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  20. ^ a b "Lifehouse : News: Music Video For "Broken" directed by Kiefer Sutherland and Frank Borin Premieres on VH1.com". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  21. ^ "Lifehouse : News: Lifehouse: 'We Want to Move Forward and Push Ourselves". Geffen Records. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  22. ^ "Nissan Live Sets: Lifehouse". Yahoo! Music. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  23. ^ unplugged.jhtml ""Broken (Unplugged)" by Lifehouse". MTV Networks. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  24. ^ "Soundstage . Lifehouse . Setlist". PBS. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  25. ^ "PinkPop 2011". eFestivals.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-08-06. 
  26. ^ "Grey's Anatomy: Lay Your Hands on Me". TV.com. January 2008. Retrieved September 18, 2011. 
  27. ^ "Music of episode 5.09 - "For Tonight You're Only Here To Know"". One Tree Hill Music. February 2008. Retrieved September 18, 2011. 
  28. ^ "Who We Are – Lifehouse". Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2011-07-17. 
  29. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History" Canadian Hot 100 for Lifehouse. Retrieved 2011-07-16.
  30. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Lifehouse – Broken". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 2011-07-16.
  31. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Lifehouse. Retrieved 2011-07-16.
  32. ^ "Lifehouse Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Lifehouse. Retrieved 2011-07-16.

External links[edit]