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If I Never Knew You

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"If I Never Knew You" is a song by American recording artists Jon Secada and Shanice, from Disney's 1995 animated feature film, Pocahontas. The song was written by composer Alan Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz, and originally recorded by American singer Judy Kuhn in her film role as the singing voice of Pocahontas, and American actor Mel Gibson in his role as Captain John Smith. Shanice and Secada's version is heard during film's end credits, and was released on September 12, 1995 as the second most popular song from the film's soundtrack, after Vanessa Williams' pop rendition of the Academy Award-winning "Colors of the Wind".

The romantic love song was originally developed for the prison scene where Pocahontas visits John Smith before he is to be put to death for the supposed alleged murder of Kocoum, a trusted Powhatan warrior who asked to marry Pocahontas. The musical number, which was about 90% animated, was to be a duet performed by the pair as they acknowledge their strong romantic love for each other. During test screenings with child audiences their attention "seemed to wander from the film", Alan Menken, the composer of the songs for Disney's Pocahontas, suggested it be cut because he also felt that it slowed the pace of the movie, with another song, Savages, about five minutes after. Though cut from the movie itself, If I Never Knew You was still performed by Jon Secada and Shanice at the end credits and released as a single. Jon Secada and Shanice also sang the song in Spanish, and Jon Secada also sang it in Brazilian Portuguese, not with Shanice, but with Daniela Mercury.

In 2005, Disney released the tenth anniversary edition of Pocahontas, which had the song fully animated and integrated into the film, but was an optional feature that you could refuse and watch the original theatrical version instead, due to seamless branching. It was performed by Mel Gibson (John Smith) and Judy Kuhn (Pocahontas) within the film's narrative. It was recorded for the original film in 1995.

This song shows the meaning of if both Pocahontas and John Smith didn't meet, they would've never fallen in love with each other and they would've never known each other without the hate and disgust from both sides; the Native Americans and the English settlers.

Lyrics

John:
If I never knew you
If I never felt this love
I would have no inkling of
How precious life can be
And if I never held you
I would never have a clue
How at last I'd find in you
The missing part of me.

In this world so full of fear
Full of rage and lies
I can see the truth so clear
In your eyes
So dry your eyes
And I'm so grateful to you
I'd have lived my whole life through
Lost forever
If I never knew you

Shanice:
If I never knew you
I'd be safe but half as real
Never knowing I could feel
A love so strong and true
I'm so grateful to you
I'd have lived my whole life through
Lost forever
If I never knew you

John:
I thought our love would be so beautiful

Shanice:
Somehow we'd make the whole world bright

John & Shanice:
I never knew that fear and hate could be so strong
All they'd leave us were these whispers in the night
But still my heart is saying we were right

Shanice:
Oh if I never knew you

John:
There's no moment I regret

Shanice:
If I never felt this love

John:
Since the moment that we met

Shanice:
I would have no inkling of

John:
If our time has gone too fast

Shanice:
How precious life can be...

John:
I've lived at last...

John & Shanice:
I thought our love would be so beautiful
Somehow we'd make the whole world bright

Shanice:
I thought our love would be so beautiful
We'd turn the darkness into light

John & Shanice:
And still my heart is saying we were right

John:
We were right
And if I never knew you

Shanice:
If I never knew you

John:
I'd have lived my whole life through

Shanice:
Empty as the sky

John & Shanice:
Never knowing why
Lost forever
If I never knew you

John Smith:
If I never knew you
If I never felt this love
I would have no inkling of
How precious life can be

If I never held you
I would never have a clue
How at last I'd find in you
The missing part of me
In this world so full of fear
Full of rage and lies
I can see the truth so clear
In your eyes
So dry your eyes

And I'm so grateful to you
I'd have lived my whole life through
Lost forever
If I never knew you

Pocahontas:
I thought our love would be so beautiful
Somehow we'd make the whole world bright
I never knew that fear and hate could be so strong
All they'd leave us were these whispers in the night
But still my heart is saying we were right
For if I never knew you

John Smith:
There's no moment I regret

Pocahontas:
If I never knew this love

John Smith:
Since the moment that we met

Pocahontas:
I would have no inkling of

John Smith:
If our time has gone too fast

Pocahontas:
How precious life can be...

John Smith:
I've lived at last...

(Instrumental)

John Smith:
And I'm so grateful to you
I'd have lived my whole life through
Empty as the sky

Pocahontas:
Never knowing why

John Smith and Pocahontas:
Lost forever
If I never knew you

Track listing

US single
  1. English Version
  2. Spanish Version
  3. Spanglish Version
UK single
  1. English Version
  2. Mine Mine Mine - David Ogden Stiers, Mel Gibson and Chorus
  3. Pocahontas Instrumental
  4. The Story of Pocahontas

Music videos

  • Clips of Pocahontas and John Smith
  • Filmed in New York City, the music video features Shanice and Secada performing the song with clips of Pocahontas being projected on buildings behind them.

Chart positions

Chart Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles 8
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Songs 24
UK Singles Chart 51

Cover versions

In 2001, it was covered by Michael Crawford and Sherie Rene Scott for The Disney Album. That same year, Angela Decicco and Bill Whitefield covered the song on the 2001 Christian/Gospel compilation album Our Heart Sings. In 2006, it was covered by The Cheetah Girls as part of DisneyMania 4 and released as a single. Hal Ketchum and Shelby Lynne recorded a version as part of The Best of Country Sing the Best of Disney. The song was also released as a Spanish single ("Si No Te Conociera," also performed by Jon Secada and Shanice). A Portuguese version was sung by Jon Secada and Daniela Mercury. The song was recently covered by Tiffany Thornton as part of DisneyMania 7 And the song was recently covered by Klara Natasztila recorded a version as part of Disney Chinder Vol 2. In Japan, a music box version was released on the 2008 album Disney in Orgel.

The Cheetah Girls version

"If I Never Knew You" was covered by The Cheetah Girls for the album, DisneyMania 4. It was released as a single and premiered on Radio Disney on April 2006.

Music video

The music video was released on Disney Channel in 2006. It features the girls pulling up at a club in a limo wearing white, sparkly dresses and then entering the club to perform the song on stage surrounded by a crowd. Scenes of the girls out on the dance floor dancing with some gentlemen are inter-cut throughout the video.

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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The article or pieces of the original article was at If I Never Knew You. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Disney Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.


v - e - d
Pocahontas logo
Media

Films: Pocahontas | Pocahontas II: Journey to a New World
Television: House of Mouse
Video games: Pocahontas (video game)
Music: Pocahontas (Original Soundtrack)
Books: Classic Storybook | Disney's Wonderful World of Reading | Golden Sight 'n' Sound Book | Little Golden Book | Marvel Comics

Disney Parks

Disney Animation Building | It's a Small World | Pocahontas Indian Village | Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom | Stitch and Friends Summer Surprise
Entertainment: Animazment - The Musical | Disney's Believe | Disney Classics: The Music & The Magic | Fantasmic! | Feel the Magic | Festival of Family & Friends | La Forêt de l’Enchantement: Une aventure musicale Disney | Mickey and the Magical Map | Pocahontas and her Forest Friends | Pocahontas le Spectacle | The Golden Mickeys | The Spirit of Pocahontas | Tree of Life Awakens | World of Color
Shop: The Spirit of Pocahontas Shop
Halloween: The Disney Villains Halloween Showtime

Characters
Pocahontas | John Smith | Governor Ratcliffe | Thomas | Meeko | Flit | Percy | Wiggins | Grandmother Willow | Chief Powhatan | Nakoma | Kocoum | Kekata | Ben and Lon | John Rolfe | King James | Queen Anne | Mrs. Jenkins | Uttamatomakkin | Namontack | Redfeather
Songs
The Virginia Company | Steady as the Beating Drum | Just Around the Riverbend | Listen With Your Heart | Mine, Mine, Mine | Colors of the Wind | Savages | If I Never Knew You | Where Do I Go from Here? | What a Day in London | Wait 'Till He Sees You | Things Are Not What They Appear | Between Two Worlds

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