During the seventh inning stretch at Fenway on the Fourth of July, I had the privilege of seeing Ronan Tynan sing "God Bless America".
Of course, I've heard Tynan sing it on TV many times. Until I heard his rendition, I had no idea there was an introductory verse. It changes the whole meaning of the song.
I also think there's something special when one of our great American songs is sung by someone born outside this country. I find that a lot of people who have come to this country have an appreciation for it that people born here take for granted. You can hear the love for this country in Tynan's voice.
I should note that Tynan had musical accompaniment to today's rendition of "God Bless America". I have to confess that he doesn't need it. His voice is a powerful instrument on his own. Here he is singing the a cappella version at Fenway on the Fourth of July back in 2010.