Jerrod Niemann just released a patriotic song, "Old Glory." The song was inspired by his love of the military, and his deep appreciation for all the sacrifices they make.
"After I wrote the song 'Old Glory,' I hung on to it," Niemann shared in the behind-the-scenes video. "I didn't play it for any civilians. I wanted our military to hear it first, because it is from the perspective of a soldier. I saved it and played it and debuted it in Spain, and I got a response that I never imagined."
Niemann and his wife, Morgan, spent last Christmas on a USO Tour in Iraq, where he got an inside look at the sacrifices those serving overseas were making.
"Living in such a divided country, it was truly ironic to be in Iraq on Christmas night, and looking across at our whole room full of our brave Americans," Niemann recalled. "Men and women from every spectrum, and every ethnicity that this earth has ever produced."
"I saw one consistency, and that was our American flag right here," Niemann continued, pointing to his left arm. "I thought, 'Man, I wish every civilian could see the unity right here in this room. And then you start to see these men and women show you beautiful memories that you know they're missing."
The Kansas native wrote "Old Glory" both to honor those making sacrifices for our country, and to support those who struggle when they return.
"They're experiencing all of this together," noted Niemann. "It's a true family. They get to lean on each other, pretty much complete strangers. And so this unity on the battlefield, watching some of your new best friends die right before your eyes or lose limbs, or come home with PTSD and it's just swept under the rug because there's not enough support. Having 20-plus suicides a day, it's just something that, as a civilian, I want to help spread awareness. All of that combined was the reason that I wrote 'Old Glory.'"
Niemann has done several USO Tours, and always been a vocal supporter of the U.S. Armed Forces. Still, it wasn't until last Christmas that Niemann felt compelled to write a song to honor those serving.
"Everybody starts showing you their babies opening presents and you wish they were together," the 39-year-old told PopCulture.com. "The one guy told me his wife had left him the day before on Christmas Eve and he had to wait eight months to get home to even try to win her back. Another guy told me his mom had passed away and he didn't get to make it to her funeral."
Niemann wanted to find a way to share what he experienced with the world, which is why he wrote "Old Glory."
"It's just my investigative journalism in a way, my take on it," Neimann said. "The only way I know how to express that is through music."0comments
"Old Glory" is available for download on iTunes.
Photo Credit: Getty images/Harmony Gerber