To think that I sat down with a perfect stranger and told him some of the worst things I have ever been through and now I have a beautiful song that I can share. That blows my mind.
-- SongwritingWith: Soldiers participant
As troops who served in the Middle East return home, many struggle with the aftermath of combat as they face reentry into civilian life. With the support of The ASCAP Foundation and with the goal of providing stress relief, returning U.S. veterans have unique opportunities to share their stories with ASCAP songwriters through SongwritingWith: Soldiers retreats and songwriting sessions.
Each retreat is an intimate event that fosters connections between participants and includes time for personal relaxation. All songs that are written with participants are professionally recorded on-site, participants are registered with ASCAP as co-writers and their songs are packaged into a CD and lyric booklet to take home and share. These songs serve as a source of pride and a means of reconnecting with family, friends, and communities. Additionally, SongwritingWith: Soldiers sustains post-retreat growth with a private online forum and a quarterly workshop via telephone. Many participants return to volunteer at future events. The positive impact ripples outward.
With an approach that sparks healing and renewal, SongwritingWith: Soldiers transforms veteran experiences of combat and their transition home through cathartic songwriting collaboration. We at The ASCAP Foundation are proud to support such an important program and we could not do it without donors like you. The program covers all expenses for participants. The next retreat is on March 14th and 15th in Virginia.
“Songwriting with U.S. soldiers who have returned from combat is certainly one of the most unusual – and rewarding – career turns I never ever imagined. To give voice to somebody who might not otherwise be able to describe those experiences is more gratifying than anything I’ve ever done.” - Darden Smith of SongwritingWith: Soldiers
Please help The ASCAP Foundation support more amazing programs like this one. Make a donation today.