In an interview, John says about this song: "Most of the material on the record seems to be addressing the kind of the angst and uncertainty of the times that we’re living in, but on an emotional level. One particular song on the album is called “Not Broken.” I got a letter from a woman whose husband was in Iraq. He was injured – paralyzed – and he doesn’t want to come home. He wants to stay in the hospital. He’s ashamed of himself. He feels like he’s less. And she just wants to let him know that he’s still everything that she ever wanted. I don’t know, it just kind of came out. It’s kind of like I was writing a love letter to him on her behalf."
In a Ustream.tv session on March 17, 2010, Robby showed the viewers a piece of sheet music that was titled Tiffiny. It's most likely the song that was recorded that day, which includes strings from an orchestra.
So let’s dig into the songs a little bit. There’s a song called “Tiffany” that has a string section on it is that correct? Was that part of the song from the start or did that evolve later on?
That song is actually called “Not Broken”, it didn’t have a title at first. We had originally cut the strings with samples on the record and then once we started listening it was one of those things where we thought it would really benefit from the human element. The folks that we worked with really captured it. Actually, the first song that we were going to put strings on was “Home”, as we were listening to the rest of the record we thought that “Not Broken” would benefit from live strings.
Source: Article: They WIll Rock You interview with R.. (10 May 2010)
(..) Rzeznik isn't one for hitting listeners over the head with anthem. "I can't write a song that says, 'get the hell out of Iraq,' he says with a short laugh.
Instead, he relies on his strength: telling personal tales evocative of bigger themes. For example, the new album features the single "Not Broken," based on correspondence between Rzeznik and the wife of a solider in Iraq. She told him that her husband had been rendered paralyzed by a battle wound. Though he has returned to the States for treatment and rehab in Veterans Administration hospitals and halfway houses, he now suffers paralysis of another sort: fear.
"He won't come home, because he's afraid she won't see him as he was," Rzeznik says. "I wanted to speak for her, to write a love letter to tell him to come home."
Heavy stuff, but accessible. The song starts with the lightness of acoustic strumming, then crashes into an epic swirl of Who-like guitars.
Source: Article: Goo Goo Dolls won't shy from social.. (13 May 2010)
First played live July 17th, 2010 at the Time Warner Cable Ampitheater in Cleveland, OH.
Notbroken peaked #19 on Billboard's Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart, just before Home on #23. It also was the most downloaded Goo Goo Dolls song on iTunes in the weeks after the release of Something For The Rest Of Us, leaving both Home and Iris behind.
During the summer of 2011, Notbroken was featured in the Dolphin Tales movie commercial on national TV.
In September 2011, Notbroken was used in a TV commercial for the movie Dolphin Tale. The song is not in the movie however.