Released in March 2007, “Let It Go” was Tim McGraw’s first new music in two-and-a-half years. By the end of April, his duet with Faith Hill, “I Need You,” was released as a single, but Tim didn’t care.
America was in the middle of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and the upcoming ACM Awards were slated for May 15. Just weeks before the show, Tim had written a song that fit the time, but he didn’t feel like waiting until the next album to let people hear it.
Telling only a handful of key people at a closed rehearsal, Tim took the ACM stage and shocked the world (and his label) by performing “If You’re Reading This,” a song that not only wasn’t on his album, but also only a handful of people had even heard it. As the song ended, a spotlight revealed scores soldiers’ families onstage under a banner that read Families of Fallen Heroes, punching every American in the heart.
Radio began playing the telecasted audio and it was such a hit that the label added the track to later version of the “Let It Go” CD.