OFFSTAGE: Keith Urban’s “For You” Breakdown

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

“What’s my act of valor?” That’s what Keith Urban asked himself before he wrote the “For You.” It was right after he’d seen a screening of the film Act of Valor and was asked to write a song for the movie. So he said the song he wrote was intended to ask the listener that question. (His own answer was, “For me, it’s absolutely my family.”) But he also took the time to break down the song almost line by line and talk about what the words meant to him. So the lyric about “I’m not trying to be the hero/I don’t wanna die” is one Urban loves because he didn’t want the song to be bravado. “It’s more, ‘I don’t want to do this, but if I have to, I will,’” he told People Country. He adds that he didn’t want to get into the politics of war, which explains the part of the song where he sings, “You don’t think about right, you don’t think about wrong.” And as for the part of the chorus where he wonders if he’d give his life, Urban says, “I felt like I can’t be asking these sorts of questions without giving my own answer. I may not be able to do what these guys are doing, but I know who I would do it for.”

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.