Roberta Lea’s ‘Uniform’ is a Song You Need to Hear This Veterans Day
If you have a personal connection to someone in the military, talented singer-songwriter Roberta Lea's new song "Uniform" is guaranteed to make you emotional.
The song, which Lea independently released on Veterans Day, is an example of expert storytelling inspired by personal life experiences. In a thread posted to her Twitter account, Lea explained the series of events that lead her to penning "Uniform."
"A year ago this time, my father had a stroke and massive brain bleed," Lea wrote. "He was home alone for over 24 hours before someone found him unconscious upstairs in his room. It is an absolute miracle he survived."
After hearing the news, Lea rushed home to be by his side, but COVID restrictions prevented any loved ones from entering his hospital room. Thankfully, Lea's father had a successful surgery and was able to be reunited with his family, and even asked them to take a picture to mark the moment - a request of which he frequently asked, according to Lea.
"The image above is the way I’d always seen him," Lea says of the single's cover art, which you can see above. "A strong and stripping soldier. And in that moment he proved me right. No #cancer, no #bullet, no #stroke could keep him down. And when I saw this picture up on the wall, I knew I wanted to write to this song…"
Lea says wasn't until an October bus ride home after performing as a part of The Black Opry Revue at New York City's Rockwood Music Hall that the song came pouring out. The result is an incredibly moving story-song that comes full circle, beginning with a tribute to her father and ending with a heartfelt wish for her own child.
Lea says that she was inspired to release the song by her young daughter, who was moved to tears after hearing it for the first time. Even if you don't personally know someone in uniform, Lea's incredibly honest and descriptive songwriting creates an affecting snapshot of the greater human experience.
Take a listen to "Uniform" below.
Roberta Lea was recently named a recipient of the Color Me Country Artist Grant Fund, a project from Rissi Palmer, acclaimed country artist and host of Color Me Country Radio on Apple Music, and The Rainey Day Artist Fund. According to a statement on their official website, the fund's mission is "to support the underrepresented voices of BIPOC artists in country music that, for too long, have lived outside the spotlight and off the airwaves."