Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Documenting the Emotions of Service Men and Women on Active Duty
A marine in Fallujah pens a song about standing watch. A sailor stationed in Hawaii scribbles a lullaby for his son, while in the Iraqi desert, a soldier raps into a tape recorder. These soldier-songwriters along with others stationed around the world submitted hundreds of their original songs to Songs from the Soul of Service, the songwriting contest exclusively for the men and women of the US military. As Songwriter, Master Sergeant David Arsement put it, “To write a song during my time in IRAQ… Between 17-hour workdays and Mortar rounds coming at us, it took longer than most of my songs to write, but a soldier’s gotta do what a soldier’s gotta do.”
After many months of anticipation, the contest’s judges from across the music profession have made their choices for the 2008 contest. There are 18 category winners and runners up. From among these, the top three songs overall are #1 “Ask Me To”, by Air Force Captain Steve Wilson; #2 “If Tomorrow Were A Dream” by National Guard E4 Greg Pritchard; and #3 “I Can’t Wait To Love You”, by Jill Charles, the wife of Army Staff Sergeant Robert Charles. Below is a complete list of winners and runners up.
As was the case with the 2005/2006 running of the contest, support from sponsors and news organizations played a major role in finding the best songs to include on the compilation CD. The winners are being recognized with prizes sponsored by, among others, Broad Jam Music Service, Chase Bank, the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center, and the Texas VFW. The professionally produced compact disc compilation of winning songs from the 2008 contest is now available along with the CD from 2007. They have been included in packages sent the soldiers overseas from the Sons of Hermann Lodge and various other non-profit service appreciation organizations. Please contact us if your organization would like to distribute the albums.