for a Free World)
In 1986 (the 100th anniversary of the Statue of
Liberty) I was asked to write the lyrics to a John Drymon
melody for a theme song that was to be used for a video
tracing the history of the Statue of Liberty. At first I
was skeptical that I could do the project justice.
Although I had been a successful songwriter and had
written hundreds of songs, I had never written anything
like a patriotic song before so I didn't know where to
I must admit I was one of the millions of complacent
Americans who rarely thought about what it means to live
in a free society. After a month of research, I had a
totally different perspective on the many freedoms that we
enjoy in this great country. I finally realized what a
great privilege it is to live in America. We are
After I finished the lyrics and the song was complete,
Liberty was selected to be performed by the New Jersey
Symphony Orchestra at the 100th anniversary of the Statue
of Liberty celebration event at Liberty State Park in NJ.
It was performed live with a 68-piece orchestra. The
reaction to the song by the 15,000 people in the audience
was nothing less than remarkable. Knowing that the song
had such a positive affect on so many people made it one
of the most emotional and inspiring days of my life.
When the tragedies of September 11th occurred, I, like
millions of other Americans, asked myself "besides
money, what do I have to give that could help"?
Liberty immediately came to mind. I thought if the song
could have such a positive affect on thousands of people
15 years ago during a time of peace, imagine how it could
help to inspire, encourage, heal, and unite Americans
after the tragic events of September 11th.
LIBERTY has been performed by the US Army Band. The song
has been featured at many national Independence Day
events, September 11th. memorial services, school
functions, church and candlelight services, and many other
events all around the country. The song has taken on a
life of its own, being circulated through the Internet to
tens of thousands of people around the world.
I hope that Ronnie's wonderful rendition of LIBERTY will
remind you of the many freedoms that we enjoy and what a
true privilege it is to live in this great country.