Martina McBride Reflects on the Poetry of "Independence Day"
"I had one [radio] programmer tell me, 'When the video's on, my daughter walks through the house, [and] now I have to explain to her what the song is about and what's going on,'" recounts McBride. "I was like, "And that's a bad thing? Wouldn't you think you'd want to use that as an opening to sit down and talk to your daughter about some of this stuff? It might be a good thing to talk to her about.'
"But it was just something that was not really talked about back then much."
"Independence Day" peaked just outside the country Top 10, but it became one of the signature songs of McBride's career, which has gone to include dozens of other hit songs, and handful of No. 1 country albums and three CMA awards for Best Female Vocals. It also an anthem for the many, many women who recognized themselves in Peters' lyrics; McBride estimates the number of fans who have told her how the song touched them personally as in the thousands. (She is also a spokeswoman for the National Domestic Violence Hotline and the National Network to End Domestic Violence.)
"You hear people say, 'I'd been in an abusive relationship in 14 years and I got in the car and I heard that song and made my decision to leave,'" reflects McBride. "It was like, wow. That's the power of music.
"One of the most moving stories was a woman said that her husband had committed suicide and she always carried all this guilt about it, and then heard that song and realized -- it sort of set her free in a way," she adds. "So music is really powerful, and that song particularly is such a well-written [song]... it's really like poetry."
Martina McBride performs with Sheryl Crow at the City of Houston's Freedom Over Texas July 4 celebration and fireworks show Thursday, July 4 at Eleanor Tinsley Park, 105 Sabine. Gates open at 2 p.m. Free.