The term "Let's Make America Great Again" has different meanings.
For Joe Ambroggio, 52, of Plainfield, it's the name of his original song honoring traditional patriotism.
"I never served in the military," Ambroggio said. "But my dad and grandfather and uncle are all veterans. I was always taught to respect where we lived and to respect the people who fought to keep us safe."
It never occurred to Ambroggio to write a song about those sentiments until one day, when standing in line at a store, he heard one tween say to another, "Daddy says we have to move out of the country because it's not a great place to live anymore."
Ambroggio was stunned.
"This is the best country in the world. It's where everybody wants to live," Ambroggio said. "Our kids are not being taught how great America is."
One day, the melody for a song popped into his mind. Ambroggio sang it into his cell phone, as he often does when he cannot stop and immediately follow his muse. Later, he took a motorcycle ride to Oregon, Illinois and wrote the lyrics to his original song, "Let's Make America Great Again."
Ambroggio wants to see veterans receiving the honor they deserve. He wants patriotic values instilled in children.
"We need to be pro-America and pro-veterans," Ambroggio said.
He wants children and adults to listen to his song.
"I think it really hits home," Ambroggio said. "It's got a good message. It's an inspiring song. It's about respect and teaching kids positive values, just common sense stuff."
Ambroggio said he's written about 100 songs in the last 25 years: pop/rock songs with "catchy little tunes," along with "a couple of country songs." He recalled writing songs as a young child, jotting down lyrics on paper with a crayon.
"I was always a creative kind of kid," Ambroggio said.
His love of patriotism was also ingrained at an early age.
"I used to watch Romper Room and by 2 I could say the Pledge of Allegiance," Ambroggio aid. "My grandma used to get a kick of my being able to memorize that so young."
Topics include Ambroggio's family (wife Margaret and children Molly and James), fishing ("I'm an outdoors type of guy," he said), along with "a couple of love songs" and " a couple about riding motorcycles."
Ambroggio writes mostly for his own entertainment, although he does occasionally perform them.
"Just me and an acoustic guitar," Ambroggio said.
Around age 10, Ambroggio took a few months worth of guitar lessons, just enough to learn "the name of the notes."
"Once I learned how to pick up the songs by ear I quit and I got out on my own," Ambroggio said.
Goal: "I like seeing other people get enjoyment out of stuff I do. That, for me, is rewarding and gratifying,"
Inspiration: I try to stick with the original idea and develop that rather than keep changing it 100 times. When it gets so far from the original idea it loses some of its luster."
Words of Wisdom: Just stick with your feelings, stick with what you think is right. Write what you believe, what comes out of your heart. Be true to who you are and what you believe in. That's all you need to keep going with it.
BUY THE SONG
"Let's Make America Great Again" is available at store.cdbaby.com/cd/josephfambroggio.