Legendary Song Revitalizes Nationwide Patriotism

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Ani Berberian
  • The United States Air Force Band

The Fourth of July holiday is a significant and momentous time for The United States Air Force Band.  Each year, the Band presents live and virtual performances, raising the bar in groundbreaking innovation and excellence. This year was no exception! A trailblazing video was produced and released, featuring a stunning new cover of the 1984 hit song, “God Bless The U.S.A.,” featuring the legendary and Grammy-winning country singer, Lee Greenwood, the award-winning country ensemble Home Free, and The United States Air Force Band’s premier vocal ensemble, The Singing Sergeants. 

This project was the inspiration of one of the newest members of The Singing Sergeants, Technical Sgt. Nadia Sosnoski. Prior to joining the Singing Sergeants in 2019, Sgt. Sosnoski resided in Nashville, singing with the Nashville Symphony Chorus. While in Nashville, she had the opportunity to meet many amazing artists, including the members of Home Free.

Home Free is a five-member country ensemble utilizing only voices, and is country music’s only acapella group. The ensemble just released their fourth album, and they are known for delivering fresh, all-new vocal arrangements of well-known songs inside and outside of the country music medium.

Sgt. Sosnoski states, “Home Free is an incredible group of musicians. I’ve had the pleasure of working with them in the past, and seeing them live in concert. I mentioned to Home Free’s tour manager, Luke Pierce, that The Air Force Band had shifted its attention to creating quality video content for our social media platforms during this time of social distancing. Luke mentioned that Home Free had also been focusing on video and audio recordings as well. Then, I simply asked if he thought Home Free would be interested in collaborating, and that got the ball rolling!”

Tim Foust, Bass Singer of Home Free, further explains, “This project was the brainchild of my friend, Technical Sgt. Nadia Sosnoski. She reached out with the idea for a collaboration between Home Free and The Singing Sergeants, and we jumped at the opportunity. Once we decided on an Independence Day release, we knew we had to get Lee Greenwood involved. The final product exceeded all of our expectations.”

The video production was an admirable and successful team effort, as all of the members of this superb collaboration were positioned in four different locations: The Singing Sergeants in Washington, D.C., Lee Greenwood and two members of Home Free in Nashville, and the remaining members of Home Free located in Los Angeles and Minneapolis.

Sgt. Sosnoski explains, “There were a lot of people who made this project happen. Aside from the performers, Chief Master Sgt. Ryan Carson, Flight Chief of the Singing Sergeants, and Chief Master Sgt. Dennis Hoffman, Chief of Production, were crucial in navigating the coordination, Zoom meetings, recording and all of the other moving parts of the production.” 

For Sgt. Sosnoski, the project was a homecoming of sorts. She explains, “What a joy to bring my old life in Nashville and my new life in Washington, D.C. together for one incredible project! The musicians in Home Free are talented beyond measure, and getting to perform with them, despite the distance has been a memorable experience.”

The Singing Sergeants have collaborated with Lee Greenwood before on previous projects and performances.  However, this project was particularly inspiring to Chief Carson. He states, “Partnering with Lee Greenwood again, and now with the added talents of Home Free, is the perfect recipe. The Band’s mission is to Honor, Inspire, and Connect. This collaboration will accomplish all of those objectives and more. This has been an amazing process to be a part of, especially in our virtual environments.”

The video has generated 1.3 million views on Social Media and YouTube. Members of the Singing Sergeants hoped that the video would resonate with each performers’ fan base and allows cross-sharing between audiences. Sgt. Sosnoski states, “It really is the perfect trio. With Fourth of July celebrations being cancelled, and 2020 being a challenging year, we hope to impart a bit of joy and patriotism.”

Following the video production and its release, Lee Greenwood stated, “The singers were absolutely fabulous! I know that they have a great deal of training. I just want to say thank you to the United States Air Force for making us all feel safe and for adding to my song, “God Bless the USA!”

“God Bless The U.S.A” featuring Lee Greenwood, Home Free and The Singing Sergeants can be seen on YouTube, and The United States Air Force Band’s Facebook Page.