I Can Only Imagine
By Frank Ulechong
MercyMe’s original song, “I Can Only Imagine”, is one of the most iconic and easily recognized songs on the Christian music scene. Originally released on MercyMe’s 1999 album The Worship Project, the song later found its well-known success when MercyMe used the song as their lead single for their 2001 major-label album debut Almost There. The song itself has sold around 200 million copies to-date and is the best-selling Christian single of all time.
The story behind the song is just as powerful as the song itself. A whole new group of people were reached by the song from seeing its story on the big screen. The impact is undeniable when analyzing the numbers the I Can Only Imagine movie accomplished. The film had a production budget of $7 million and reaped a domestic gross total of around $83.4 million and an additional $1.9 million internationally for a grand total of $85 million in the box office. It is apparent that the movie has had an impact on audiences within the US and the band has commented on how the movie is reaching new people and touching hearts. Before the movie was released, the trailer that was posted on the movie’s Facebook page in January 2018 garnered hundreds of thousands of likes and around 60 thousand comments. Thousands of people wrote in the comment section sharing their experience on how the song touched their lives.
Written and composed by MercyMe’s lead vocalist Bart Millard, “I Can Only Imagine” was inspired by the death of Millard’s father. Millard states that the song took him only 10 minutes to write and is one of the few songs that he wrote in one sitting without any mistakes and was never altered afterwards. The lyrics poetically reflect Millard’s conception of how it would be to stand in God’s presence in Heaven.
Currently (07/31/19), JOY FM has nine different versions of “I Can Only Imagine” within our music library. Versions include the original, acapella renditions, as well as an instrumental, symphonic, and a mashup version. Request one of them today or let us know if you come across a version you want us to have in our library. Call 472-1111 on Guam and 323-11113 in the CNMI to call in your requests. You can also leave your requests on our website at joyfmradio.net. Make sure to also check out MercyMe’s stuff online as well.