Meaning of “Broken Halos” by Chris Stapleton

“Broken Halos” is a song recorded and performed by American singer and songwriter Chris Stapleton. According to Stapleton, the lyrics of “Broken Halos” were inspired by people who died before “their time”.

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Chris Stapleton's Broken Halos at

According to Stapleton, he recorded this song the very day that a very close friend of his lost his life after losing his battle with pancreatic cancer.

During many of his performances in 2017, Stapleton dedicated the song to all those who lost their lives in tragedies in America ranging from the 2017 Las Vegas shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival (which claimed 59 lives) to the 2017 California Wildfires that claimed 43 lives.

Lyrics of "Broken Halos"

Facts about “Broken Halos”

  • This song was co-written by Stapleton and his dear friend and writing partner American singer-songwriter Mike Henderson. Stapleton and Henderson once played in the same band called the SteelDrivers.
  • Stapleton produced this track along with noted American record producer Dave Cobb. Among other country acts, Cobb has worked with Zac Brown Band, Sturgil Simpson, Anderson East and Lori McKenna.
  • The song was released in July 2017 as the second single from Stapleton’s second studio album titled From A Room: Volume 1.
  • Stapleton’s wife Morgane Stapleton sang the background vocals on the track.
  • Stapelton premiered the track on December 13th, 2016 during his performance at the singer Dolly Parton’s Smoky Mountains Rise benefit to help the victims of the 2016 Great Smoky Mountains wildfires in Tennessee.
  • “Broken Halos” topped the US Country Airplay chart. It went on to peak at number 5 on the US Hot Country Songs and number 45 on the US Billboard Hot 100. This is one of the most successful songs of Stapleton’s entire musical career.



Did “Broken Halos” win a Grammy Award?

Yes, the song did. It won the Best Country Song award at the 60th Annual Grammy Awards in 2018 after beating the likes of “Body Like a Back Road” by Sam Hunt and “Better Man” by Taylor Swift.

What musical genre is “Broken Halos”?

It is multi genre song that can be placed in the following categories: Country rock, southern gospel and folk rock.

20 Responses

  1. David Ridenour says:

    This is a beautiful song. I listen to it often!

  2. Ethel says:

    I love love love this song, all the time I hear it I think of my mom passed away 2/8/14, she had dementia. She was not bestie and my angle.

    • Kojo says:

      While we are glad to hear you love this song, we are also very sorry to hear about the passing of your beloved mother. May she rest in perfect peace.

    • Anonymous says:

      Lost my mom March 2018, also my idol. This song bought me some comfort somehow too.
      May our angels soar👼

  3. Lenny says:

    This song fits my recently departed wife (12/4/2018) perfectly
    But she will always be my guardian angel, no matter what!

  4. Dan says:

    Beautiful song that eerily was the last song I heard moments before my father passed. Still brings a tear to my eye everytime I hear it.

  5. DENNIS says:

    my wife passed away in July of 2019 from melanoma cancer. She requested Broken Halos be played at her funeral. I listen to the song often.

  6. Jeff says:

    I didn’t have anyone pass away, but I can relate this song to the breakup of my son and his wife. It was very sudden and abrupt, with her having an affair. As a father in law, I felt that I had a close relationship with her. But since the breakup, she hasn’t spoken to me. This song best describes how i feel about her now, “A broken halo that used to shine”. It’s a beautiful song. Thank you.

  7. Marshall Hayden says:

    I’m 47 massive heart attack 7 stents in my heart and a defibrillator in my chest. Doctors say I’m a walking miracle and I’ve outlived my life expectancy. God is good! I went to see Chris in Washington great show. This is my funeral song! It’s fitting and powerful. God bless Chris Stapleton.

  8. Sami says:

    Close to my heart, I listen to it often!

  9. Shelley Lewis says:

    We chose to play this song at my son’s funeral in celebration of the beautiful Angel he was and always will be. He died suddenly at the age of 34 from a burst Pancreatic Psuedo-cyst doctors failed to diagnose after a year of being ill and numerous CT Scans and other tests.
    It has broken my heart in two to lose my beloved son but I find peace in listening to this song and knowing the meaning behind it means even more now. God bless you Chris Stapleton. I dream of seeing you in concert one day. My son Bryon looked a lot like you with his beautiful blue eyes and long beard.

  10. Becky says:

    18 yr old Son passed in’98. 30 yr old Son in ’07. Their Father just passed & this song played at his Service Yesterday. Thank you for this Music💕

  11. Anonymous says:

    My son in law has a very aggressive lukemia he has already our lived his expectancy of 3 yrs. This is his song from me. He is the most amazing husband, dad and son anyone could ever ask for and we have been so blessed for God to have given him too use even if it is much shorter than we would like! Love kelly!!

  12. Vanessa says:

    This song makes me think of my Dad. We lost him 1/5/21 at the age of 49 to covid. No prior help issues. He will always be the greatest husband, Dad and Papa. We miss you so much dad.

  13. CLIVE says:

    I have lost 4 family members in the last two years. Some left with no answers as to why the others to cancer and covid . I herd broken halos a handful of times before while listening to Chris Stapleton’s albums I’ve saved but one day after all the loss our family has been through the lyrics jumped off the page making sense from all the madness over the last few years, making this my all time favourite song. Thanks Chris , your music is beautiful and it knows how to peak at the right time.

  14. Hingsi says:

    “Broken halos” a song I can’t stop listening to. I lost my big bro on April 19th, 2021 in an accident, and my brother-in-law in 2014 June. They are the most reliable people in my life. They left their kids and wives widowed and fatherless leaving everything upon my shoulder. Am so so broken and desperate knowing that they are no longer with us. But can I do. God knows better and it’s up to Him who will go and who will stay. Remembering them everyday listening to this song.

  15. BRADO says:

    Such a spiritually powerful work of art…my mom passed away in 2017 & it was around that time I heard it playing on the radio. Just one of those pieces that pulls you in instantly & you don’t want it to end. The aspect about this composition that most impresses me however is Stapleton’s choice of the lyrics “Where they go…i don’t know …they belong to the bye & bye.” Which is a nod to the one of the first Country music records ever in American history “Can the Circle be Unbroken Bye & Bye Lord” by the Carter Family circa 1930. The lyrics in that original deal w/death & the hope of being reunited in the afterlife which in Catholicism is the concept of The Communion of Saints.

  16. Edmonton says:

    This was the last song I shared with my mom the day she died Christmas Eve 2021 from cancer. Always liked the song and got to see Chris perform it live in May’22. Felt like she was there too.

  17. Fran S. says:

    Yes, angels do come down from heaven to help us on our way. I love Chris for saying this.

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