Nothing is more rewarding for a songwriter like me than to hear other people sing songs I've written. But a song becomes extra special when it touches people in ways one never quite imagined.
"Shine" has always been one of my favorite compositions. It won Second Prize in the 1996 Metropop Song Festival, but it wasn't a hit until Regine Velasquez recorded it in 2004 for a SkinWhite ad. It still surprises me that something I wrote as a love song has also appealed to others as an inspirational song. Choirs have sung various arrangements of it. My friend Mike Kilayko from Guam, whose work entails providing music and musicians to Japanese clients, told me how the song seems to appeal to Japanese people, too. Maybe it's the easy-to-recall melody, or the waltzy feel. For those who have sung it in singing contests, it's a song that provides them an opportunity to showcase their high notes.
The song's appeal, I recently realized, was broader than I thought. My college best friend Dedette shared with me this video of a blind, autistic girl named Sam who sang "Shine." I must say, it's the most heartwarming rendition of the song I've encountered. She seemed to be in her own world while singing the song, you'd never guess the pure tones were coming from her. What a blessing it is to have written a song that could bring out the best in someone so special.
You make me shine, shine
Like the stars in the heavens
You keep me shining through
With the love that you've given
I'm shining on
All because of you
The song is all about bringing out the best in others. I'd like to think the song has brought out the best in Sam, and people have seen a side of her and of autism that they perhaps have not seen before. Sam has also inspired and brought out the best in other people - those who have loved and supported her, as well as those who have heard her sing for the first time. Reading the comments on that page, she has brought people to tears and renewed their faith in God and in what is possible.
As for me, boy, what an honor and a blessing to know that somehow I have made this kind of a connection with someone so special. It's people like these who make a songwriter like me shine. Thank you for singing my song, Sam.
My name is Trina Belamide and I'm a songwriter and record producer.
GreatSongsToSing is my online store and I thank you for dropping by! Do comment on my blog posts. I'd love to hear from you!
Learn more about me on www.trinabelamide.com.