So I recently performed the Star Spangled Banner for the first time. This was on April 9, 2021 at the start of the National Ninja League’s (NNL) Southeast Qualifier held at MOTIVE School of Movement in Greenville, SC. I’ve never done it before, but have thought about trying it, and just had to work up an arrangement that I liked on guitar.
The story behind the National Anthem has stuck with me since I first heard it way back in school. If you need a reminder, in 1814, Francis Scott Key was observing from a distance as the British Navy bombarded Fort McHenry in the Baltimore harbor (Key was actually being held by the British on one of their warships). Witnessing the assault by the British, it was nearly certain that the fort would be overtaken. But through the night, by “the rockets red glare”, Key could see that “our flag was still there”, and was ultimately still flying over the fort at “dawn’s early light”.
That story always sticks with me whenever I hear or sing it, and I can only imagine what an incredible sight that must have been.
Sometimes these days, in some places, it seems like a fad to hate on America. I’m proud that this country fought the oppression of an over-reaching government to create a system for the people and by the people, emphasizing individual liberty, freedom, rights to due process and equality of opportunity. SALUTE!