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Andra Townsend - "Hidden Heroes"
Recorded on Art Records
By: Cheryl Harvey Hill, Sr. Staff Journalist

The success of any song often hinges, in large part, on how many people can readily identify with the lyrics; well, I for one, can readily identify to the new single by Andra Townsend titled "Hidden Heroes" and I'm sure that many other military family members will also.

Townsend, whose brother-in-law is a Major in the Air Force, and Eddie Kilgallon, former member of the popular group Ricochet, collaborated on this project. While Townsend is new to the industry, Kilgallon is a seasoned veteran and knows firsthand what it takes to write a great song. In 1997 he co-wrote on the George Strait hit "One Night at a Time" and earned the ASCAP Country Song of the Year award. We all know that a combination of total empathy for subject matter and songwriting savvy are a dynamic blend and this single is proof of that fact.

Kilgallon first met Townsend a few years ago when she gave him one of her demo CDs after a concert and they have been writing together ever since. “Andra knows first-hand what her sister went through after her husband was deployed,” Kilgallon says. “We decided it would be a great idea to write a song about that.”

“I understand the struggles my sister has gone through,” says Townsend, “'Hidden Heroes’ is special, and I hope it can touch a lot of people.”

The hidden heroes wait at home / Keep a close watch on the phone / Check their email twice a day / For pictures from far away / They're on the home front standing true / For the red white and blue / They're not soldiers I suppose / But every day's a fight for the hidden heroes.

In her quest to "touch a lot of people," Townsend has provided a network of links from her personal site where military friends and family members can connect and exchange letters and photos. She has also pledged a portion of all proceeds from the sale of "Hidden Heroes" to the National Military Family Association, a non-profit organization focused solely on improving the quality of life of military families.

As an Army veteran who is married to a career soldier, I am always in favor of songs that raise awareness about the military and, goodness knows, there are far too few songs about the sacrifices of the family members. My husband has been in the Army for twenty-three years and doesn't plan on retiring anytime soon. Several years ago I wrote an editorial for a military newspaper titled "Spouses and Family Members Serve Too." In that editorial I said, "We may be reluctant patriots, but we serve judiciously, and we serve with pride."

I think "Hidden Heroes" is an appropriate tribute to an often overlooked facet of the military community. Kudos and a big Army "Hooah!" to Ms. Townsend for recognizing the heart of the military soldier; his or her family and friends.

Official Andra Townsend website: http://www.andracountry.com/
National Military Family Association:
http://www.nmfa.org/
If you are a member of a military family you can share your story and photos at www.hiddenheroes.us

I would like to invite you to read the rest of my editorial about military family members, you will find it archived on my personal website, which is dedicated to military families, at: http://www.2steppin.com/chhill/ 

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