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The Ryan Alan Band will premiere its video '(To You) I Raise My Glass'
By Duane Good, EDITOR

Ryan Alan

Matt Danner

Lee Straw

Cory McCartney

Singing telegrams used to be commonplace, and musical birthday and Valentine’s Day cards still happen on a regular basis.

The Ryan Alan Band has done something a little different – a ‘‘thank you note’’ in song.

The group – most of whom live in the Halifax area – will premiere the video of its single release, ‘‘(To You) I Raise My Glass,’’ Saturday, March 12 at the Halifax Fire Department social hall, South River Road.

The event begins at 5 p.m. More details are found in an inset accompanying this article.

The song and video – which was shot in the Halifax area and includes many local people in the ‘‘cast’’ –  pay tribute to all active and  veteran U.S. service men and women; (National Guard included); volunteer firefighters; emergency medical personnel; and  doctors and nurses.

Band members are ‘‘thanking anyone in civil service that protects us in one way or another, so that we can do what we do,’’ said Matthew ‘‘Doughboy’’ Danner, the band’s drummer and manager.

The song’s lyrics were written by Ryan Alan, the band’s lead singer and, like Danner, a Halifax-area residents. The music was jointly written by Danner; rhythm guitarist Lee Straw, also of Halifax; former lead guitarist Jason Bruno of York; and former bass guitarist Ben Kreiger of Pottsville.

Corey McCartney, lead guitarist of Halifax, and Danner provide the band’s backing vocals.

The video includes a performance by the band and re-enactments of emergency workers re-enacting a fire scene and a vehicle crash.

‘‘Basically just being normal, doing what they do everyday,’’ said Danner.

The song itself already has proven popular, trending on CD Baby and iTunes for about three weeks. It is part of a six-track extended-play CD single that the band  released last July.

“Ryan and  I were just sitting around talking one night, and I said, ‘Hey: We need to write a song thanking our hometown heroes and servicemen,’ ’’ Danner explained.

‘‘By the next rehearsal Ryan had lyrics and chords, and were writing the music. Then we released it as a single and it was a huge hit, so we  decided we needed to do a music video on it. The rest is history,’’ he added.

The video was shot in two days – outdoor, band and crowd scenes were done in one 16-hour Saturday session, starting at 8 a.m. and finishing at midnight. Emergency re-enactments were shot on a different Saturday.

Locations included the Danner farm on Matamoras Road near Halifax; and the Halifax Fire Department building and training grounds.

‘‘We couldn’t see taking the shots outside of this area – the beautiful wooded scenes to the hometown heroes,’’ said Danner.

‘‘We all feel strong about taking care of our roots. We as a band will continue to support our hometown for as long as we can,’’ he added. “The Halifax Fire Department has been huge supporters, both on this project and  of the band itself. We absolutely love them!’’

The band had what it called an outpouring of local people wanting to be part of the video – everyone from the fire department to those in the crowd scenes.

Jason Graff and Dominique McGruther helped to round up numerous four-wheel-drive trucks and their drivers that appear in one scene and the band couldn’t have done it without their help, Danner said.

Videographers were Jessica and Jon Garcia and their team from Springwood Productions of Jarrettsville, Md. Drone photography was done by Seth Lenker of Millersburg.

The March 12 event will include a dinner and awards presentation (the award recipients are secret at this point); the premiere of the video; and a concert with The Ryan Alan Band opening for Perry County-based RedNeck Ruckus.

“They will put on one heck of a show,’’ said Danner of the headliners. ‘‘They are a southern rock, country rock, bluegrass mix – very interesting.

‘‘They are our brothers,’’ he added. ‘‘We have worked with them from the beginning; they used to open for us, then they got big and are out headlining their own shows! We love them and support them tremendously. You don’t want to miss them!’’

The Ryan Alan Band will stay busy following its March 12 event. They will be recording a full-length CD in May and June for a summer release. They also have some smaller-sized tours planned and are working on another promotional video.

The group performed in Nashville a few years back and are in the early stages of returning, possibly sometime this fall.

Release party slated March 12

The Ryan Alan Band has scheduled a release party for the video ‘‘(To You) I Raise my Glass’’ Saturday, March 12 at the Halifax Fire Department building,  South River Road.

The event starts at 5 p.m and will include a barbecue chicken dinner, followed by an awards banquet at 7 p.m., premiere of the video at 8 p.m. and performances by the Ryan  Alan Banks and RedNeck Ruckus, starting around 8:30 p.m.

Tickets are $15 and are available from any band member or via the band’s Facebook page. All proceeds will go toward costs of producing the video and the band’s new album slated for release this summer.

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