By Master Sgt. Ani Berberian, The United States Air Force Band
/ Published July 14, 2020
"God Bless the U.S.A." is one of America's most iconic songs, so we are thrilled to have been part of history in the brand new cover of this hit, featuring Lee Greenwood, Home Free, and the Singing Sergeants!
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 2018, 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 someone close to Home Free 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. She mentioned that Home Free had also been focusing on video and audio recordings as well. Then, I simply asked if she thought Home Free would be interested in collaborating, and that got the ball rolling!”
After Home Free expressed interest in collaborating with the Singing Sergeants, Luke Pierce, Home Free’s manager, suggested to Sgt. Sosnoski that the Singing Sergeants reach out to Lee Greenwood to see if he wanted to be involved.
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.”