When actor Burton Collins was visiting his okay grandmother, she said something that really speak to him. She asked that “How can I help you speak goodbye?” shortly before her 1988 death, and also held on to it for numerous years.

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Turning the Phrase into A Song

He was introduced to singer-songwriter Karen Taylor-Good, that is finest known because that her peak 40 single “Diamond In The Rough” in 1982. Together, they wrote music and lyrics to accompany Collins’ grandmother’s words, which they used as the location of the song, “How have the right to I assist You speak Goodbye”.

The song follows a young mrs and three significant losses she experiences throughout her life. First, together a child, the narrator moves far from her finest friend. Next, she and also her husband decide to separate and also lastly, her mommy passes away in late adulthood. When the narrator is mourning each loss, her mother asks her,

“How deserve to I assist you to say goodbye? It’s OK to hurt, and it’s OK come cry Come, allow me host you and I will certainly try How have the right to I help you to say goodbye?”

Country singer Patty Loveless included “How have the right to I assist You say Goodbye” on she 1993 album Only What i Feel. ~ the album achieved Gold status, radio stations were requesting Loveless’ record label that they relax “How can I assist You speak Goodbye” together a single, and also in in march 1994, lock did.

A huge Success

It climbed steadily up the charts, getting to No. 3 in June. The song was for this reason well-received, it to be nominated because that a Grammy award for ideal Female nation Vocal Performance and also Best country Song. The music video was nominated for video of the Year in ~ the CMAs and also ACMs.

Loveless proves her ability as an incredible storyteller in the poignant song.

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When Life Imitates Art

During a 2008 interview with Country Universe, Loveless revealed the tune took ~ above a totality new definition for her after she mother and mother-in-law pass away very close together.

“When i was driving ago to Georgia the other day, ns was listening to ‘How deserve to I assist You to Say Goodbye.’ that was actually a live variation from a if ago, and I had tear in my eyes,” she said. “The emotions felt favor running rapids…Now i have lived through that song, after ~ the experience with my mother, and also I affix to it. Every one of it.”

She additionally reveals that the suggest of the track isn’t to emphasis on the sadness behind it, the “to supply a tune that’s healing…give people hope, also through sadness.”