If I Can Dream – Elvis from A to Z

I chose “If I Can Dream” for my ‘I’ Elvis topic for the A to Z Blogging Challenge. Just months after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr was shot and killed in Memphis and just days after Robert Kennedy was shot and killed in Los Angeles, Elvis started to film his NBC Special simply called Elvis – today known as the ’68 Comeback Special. This year marks the 50th anniversary of those tragedies and Elvis’ triumphant return to the stage.

According to Jerry Schilling, Elvis could recite Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Jerry said Elvis had tears in his eyes when he was told Dr. King had been assassinated and simply said, “the man always told the truth.” Two months later, Elvis was in the studio preparing for his NBC Special when songwriter Earl Brown asked Elvis how he was feeling and what he wanted to say. “If I Can Dream” was born out of that conversation.

There must be lights burning brighter somewhere
Got to be birds flying higher in a sky more blue
If I can dream of a better land
Where all my brothers walk hand in hand
Tell me why, oh why, oh why can’t my dream come true
oh why
There must be peace and understanding sometime
Strong winds of promise that will blow away the doubt and fear
If I can dream of a warmer sun
Where hope keeps shining on everyone
Tell me why, oh why, oh why won’t that sun appear
We’re lost in a cloud
With too much rain
We’re trapped in a world
That’s troubled with pain
But as long as a man
Has the strength to dream
He can redeem his soul and fly
Deep in my heart there’s a trembling question
Still I am sure that the answer gonna come somehow
Out there in the dark, there’s a beckoning candle
And while I can think, while I can talk
While I can stand, while I can walk
While I can dream, please let my dream
Come true, right now
Let it come true right now
Oh yeah
Even if I didn’t know the backstory behind “If I Can Dream,” I would still love it just for its sheer passion, or should I say Elvis’ passionate performance of it. It is the perfect song to play before the Candlelight Vigil every year, and I cry every year when it’s played!



What is your favorite movie, song, book about Elvis that begins with ‘I’? Please comment below.  Remember to check back tomorrow to see what ‘J’ topic I’ve chosen for Elvis, as my A to Z April Blogging Challenge continues here.

10 Comments on If I Can Dream – Elvis from A to Z

  1. If I Can Dream is 1 of my very favorite Elvis songs. Still can relate to the song to this day. Love when he wears the white suit singing that song in the Comeback special. He looks fablous in that suit!


  2. What a great choice for the letter I! So much passion and deep meaning was put into his performance of this song. No one could have done it better than him! There are so many Elvis songs that begin with the letter “I” that are my favorites. If I had to narrow it down to just a few I would choose; I’m leaving, Indescribably Blue, especially because of Jerry Schilling telling the story of Elvis’s recording of this song makes it all the more special, It’s Only Love and finally “it’s over”. So many great songs!!


  3. My favorite Elvis tune that starts with I is “In The Ghetto.” His work in the late Sixties is underrated, I think.


  4. What an excellent selection. I love the amount of emotion he put into this recording.


  5. My gosh! I’ve never heard that one before. Starting to think I’m not a true Elvis is fan!


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