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“Hail to My Fairyland”: The New, Patriotic Song Taking America by Storm and Championing American Values

Kerry Kennard Tells about New Patriotic Song ‘Hail To My Fairyland’

July is the Independence month and patriotism fills the air across the nation. Along with timeless patriotic songs, new ones celebrating America and its timeless values are also making their way to the summer music scene. One of the latest patriotic songs is Hail To My Fairyland by Twin Paws Productions. Written by Ernest Dempsey and produced by Ohio-based musician Kerry Kennard, this song celebrates the American values of justice, love, and liberty. Kerry Kennard tells about his work on the song in the chat included below.

Kerry, please tell us why you chose to do this song?

Meeting Ernest on a film scripting site called Stage 32 (with some film music exchanges), I liked what he wanted to express – i.e. I ‘Prefer people who love freedom and are proud to express it in music”. Being a Believer, creating a project about Freedom sounded interesting. He’s one of the first working contacts through Stage 32 also. The process for this song included creating the music, finding the singer, and finishing the mix/mastering.

When you usually compose music, is it for lyrics provided or do the lyrics come later?

I‘ve done all instrumentals, so Hail to my Fairyland is the first Song with lyrics. With some of my personal songs, it seems a melody comes along with the words in my head.  Hail to my Fairyland was different, as Ernest gave his singing/humming version of the melody via email files; though I made the melody a little different, as to accommodate the other verses (words).  One verse I had to add a triplet for an extra word. It was a little tricky; nonetheless, I made the ending phrase as close to the other verses.

Before taking up this project, were you ever inspired to do patriotic music?

Not really, but my music projects before this include Jazz, CCM, and a Christmas project. So, the theme for loyal, freedom, and positivity have been part of my upbringing and life philosophy.  I performed in church services playing drums for 4th of July/Patriotic concerts in the area, some of which were song packages, think Armed Forces Medley. With this background, it’s probably why the tune fits the style so well. I purposely made the song contemporary, while adding the drum part with a march feel during the verses.

Songs can be done in more than one way. Have you done a song or piece of music for which you also had an alternative version?

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Well, glad you asked this one, sir. A Latin tune I started writing didn’t have an alternate version.  After having the tune mixed/mastered via an outside source, the new mix is the one I plan on using. So, the original could be an Alternate version. There’s been this one older instrumental in which I redid the drums to, using real drums instead of the MIDI drums, which did sound good.  Though, with the cymbal swells and real side stick on snare for the ¾ section, it made the piece so much livelier and added a great dance feel to the music.

How does the Independence Day relate to the music in Hail To My Fairyland?

It is definitely a progression. I remember Ernest’s original chorus; all four stanzas were “Hail to my Fairyland.” I suggested adding different words. From a few writer’s nights in Nashville, TN, I shared with Ernest writers have about 3:15 seconds to say what they want to say. Advising this suggestion,

Hail to my fairyland
A place with freedom
Hail to my fairyland
Redeemed to Hea-von

We agreed on keeping it simple:

Hail to my fairyland

God made my fairyland

Hail to my fairyland

I love my fairyland

This chorus keeps the message simple and on point to God, upholding values, and a love for our land.

What are some of your all-time favorite famous American and foreign musicians?

Basia, Sade. Always liked Alex Acuna (Percussionist), Dave Weckyl – seen a few times in clinics (a drummer). Alex’s smooth and complex style encouraged me to perform those percussion parts and have enjoyed the music he created, especially with the Koinonia group.  Dua Leepa is a more current favorite singer/musician whose music I like. Tinto Puente’s ‘Golden Lain Jazz All Stars’ is one of my fav Latin CDs, as Yellow Jackets ‘Raising our Voice’ [2018]  (with Bob Mintzer on Sax and William Kennedy on Drums) is also a great inspiring and insightful Contemporary Jazz CD. It highlights interesting meters, harmonies, unisons with Luciana Souza’s vocals along with Bob’s Sax melodies, and fantastic ballads illustrating how this team of musicians came together to make a great project.

What is your next music project that you are excited about?

I wrote a Latin tune for a compilation project coming up. After doing some mixing, I outsourced the Mastering to an associate met through last Jazz Master’s program and he did some wonderful mastering / orchestration. I think the instrumental will do well on this project, as one of the other artists is a percussionist also.

Thank you Kerry for taking time for this chat.

See more of Kerry Kennard’s work on his website