When you’re sitting in the choir loft on Sunday morning and are distracted, you’re usually not penning your next hit song (perhaps it’s because you’re too busy fighting off the embarrassment of nodding off in front of everyone!). For singer-songwriter DeDe Wedekind, however, the Holy Spirit would grab a hold of her one July 4 weekend service in 2012 to answer to a higher kind of distraction. Inspired by the words coming from the pulpit that morning in church, Wedekind and husband wrote the song “America United.” Garnering attention across her fan base for years, the couple then tweaked the song in the wake of the 2016 presidential election, resulting in another IMEA Award for the independent artist. Now the day before the inauguration of President-elect Donald J. Trump, CCM Magazine catches up with Wedekind for more behind the song “America United.”
> To watch the lyric video for “America United” on this page, please click the “play” button above.
CCM Magazine: What is your reaction to the response “America United” has received?
DeDe Wedekind: To me, everyone who hears “America United” seems to like and relate to the overwhelming message of this song—which is the necessity of uniting all Americans once again. This song isn’t about a particular political party, being conservative or liberal, or even being Democrat or Republican—it’s about making America a great nation once again. “One nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all.”
Originally written in 2012, it features President Ronald Reagan‘s message of making America great quoting the line, “Once again, make America Great.” When President-elect Donald Trump decided to run last year, my husband Larry and I had already decided to update “America United” to make it a better song with a more concise message and better production. We then decided to also incorporate Trump’s slogan, which, again was completely based on Reagan’s original message. We repeated the slogan in the chorus of the 2016 version, since it was already a part of the original song, and more importantly felt strongly that God had given it to President Reagan, and now again to President-elect Trump.
CCM: With so much division we are experiencing, is this message especially timely?
DW: We are personally shocked at all the hatred, divisiveness and blame-games the media, and so many of us, are aiming. I personally feel that hate speech is very evil, and many Americans—and the media—are playing right into the hands of the devil, who would like nothing more than to tear down the Judeo-Christian foundations upon which America, and our Constitution stands upon.
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