Skip to Content Skip to Navigation

To Our Canadian Troops Commemorative CD: News

Dennis' Song To Be In Tony Towstego's "Canada Remembers" Television Documentary

Dennis was interviewed at the Festival For Heroes by Tony Towstego, a very well know TV documentary and film producer. Tony has produced many award winning programs including the series "Canada Remembers" that will be aired across Canada on the Vision Network, November 11, 2011 at 7:00 PT and 10:00 ET. Dennis is honoured to be included in this historical documentary.

Dennis Performs Song At National Festival For Heroes Concert August 2011 (Barry Gerting Kelowna Capital News)

The inspiration to write a song can come to a songwriter in a variety of ways.

Dennis Leclair’s inspiration to write a song that commemorates Canadian troops came while watching a news report three years ago about the 100th soldier being killed in Afghanistan.

“Just watching the display of the faces of our fallen heroes over there, with a mundane elevator music in the background…I just felt we should have a song that is supportive and wishing our troops to come home safe,” Leclair recalled.

He is no stranger to the military as his cousin has just finished his third deployment tour to Afghanistan while his father was a Second World War vet and his grandfather a First World War survivor.

So two days after seeing the TV news report, Leclair had written the lyrics to his song and was in the studio of local music producer Bob Gablehouse recording it, backed up by the 60-student member Anne McClymont Elementary School choir.

Heather Davis, a retired captain in the Canadian Forces with an extensive music background, was approached by Leclair to compose a band arrangement for his song.

“It did not take long for me to realize that (Leclair) had written a song that would open a dialogue, bridge a gap—however you want to put it—between the public and the military,” Davis said.

Davis wrote the music and the Naden Band of Maritime Forces Pacific were recruited to record it.

The recording became the focal point of a commemorative CD that Leclair released with the idea of it being a fundraiser for programs that support Canadian troops and their families, retired veterans and military support staff.

Leclair says his goal is to distribute 450,000 complimentary CDs to all Canadian Forces troops worldwide.

“The profits from this project go directly to the Military Families Fund, Soldier On and Hospital Comfort funds, which assist military family members with accessing critical support services during these stressful times,” Leclair said.

Backed by a military band, Leclair has performed the song at two prestigious events—the 2009 Gala of Hope fundraiser in Toronto and a performance at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.

He also sang his song at the Canada Day festivities in Prospera Place on July 1, 2009, backed by the Kelowna Community Band and the anniversary celebrations for the B.C. Dragoons.

His next gig has Leclair, who is a counsellor in Kelowna when he’s not involved with his “heart and soul” musical project, playing the song on stage with an acoustic guitar and an accompanying video.

He will perform at the National Festival For Heroes Concert for the Troops taking place Aug. 6 in Saskatoon.

“It’s an honour for me to play there but there will be about 10,000 people in attendance, so it’s not exactly a small crowd. For me, it will be a little bit intimidating and exciting to play the song for them,” Leclair said.

Others performing at the music festival will include Glass Tiger, country singer Julian Austin and blues-rock guitarist George Leach.

Beginning and Intermediate Band Arrangements and Piano and Choir Arrangements Available

The Beginning and Intermediate Concert Band arrangements and the piano and choir arrangements of "To Our Canadian Troops" are now available to purchase on this site in both a download or presentation/sheet music format. The sheet music can also be purchased through St. John's Music stores across Canada. Six CANEX stores are retailing the commemorative CD including Canadian Forces Bases Borden, Victoria, Petawawa, Trenton, Edmonton and Gagetown.

Canadian Forces Network Europe Interviews Dennis

Gary Barnes of the Canadian Forces Network Europe in Germany completed an extended interview with Dennis on April 21, 2010 related to the "To Our Canadian Troops" commemorative CD and band music project. The three radio programs can be heard on the Media/Video page.

Troop Song Performance at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa

(Okanagan Sunday Staff - Kelowna Daily Courier May 2, 2010) Kelowna musician Dennis Leclair will perform his tribute song, To Our Canadian Troops, in Ottawa with the Central Band of the Canadian Forces at the National Arts Centre for MusicFest May 18th. The performance in the Southem Hall is for 2500 music educators and band performers. MusicFest involves more than 10,000 musicians from across Canada. "This is truly an honour and a privilege to be granted this opportunity," said Leclair.

In addition, the band arrangements of To Our Canadian Troops have been accepted for distribution to schools Canada wide by St. John's Music, he said. " I am moving closer to the goal of developing our song as the Canadian anthem for our Canadian Forces, their families and our veterans worldwide. Canada does not have such a song, and this performance at the National Arts Centre and the distribution with St. John's Music is a significant step forward".

Leclair is donating all profits from the commemorative CD and the band music to three military charities: The Military Families, Soldier On and the Hospital Comfort funds.

Leclair also performed the song for Prime Minister Harper and 1800 dignitaries and guests on Nov. 10 at the True Patriot Love Dinner Gala held at the Toronto Convention Centre.

True Patriot Love Dinner

Dennis performed "To Our Canadian Troops" for 1800 guests at the True Patriot Love Dinner in Toronto on November 10th, 2009 at the Toronto Convention Centre. This Gala raised approximately 2.5 million dollars for the Military Families Fund. Dignitaries attending included Prime Minister Harper, General Walt Natynczyk, and General Rick Hillier. Dennis sang the song with the assistance of the 7th Toronto Regiment Band and the Fern Hill Choir.
Click below for information on the True Patriot Love Dinner.
True Patriot Love Dinner

Special Performance

Dennis has been invited to perform the song "To Our Canadian Troops" for General Walt Natynczyk Chief of the Defence Staff. General Natynczyk will be giving a presentation to selected invited guests in Kelowna BC on August 14th.

Naden Band of Maritime Forces Pacific Records "To Our Canadian Troops" - September 30, 2009

The Naden Band of Maritime Forces Pacificunder the direction of Robert Byrne Lieutenant (Navy) Commanding Officer recorded the advanced instrumental version and an alternate vocal version of "To Our Canadian Troops". The advanced band arrangement was written by Captian (Ret) Heather Davis, former Commanding Officer and Director of Music.

(Press Release) Honourable Minister MacKay gets involved in grassroots project to honour our troops - June 30, 2009

Canada Day will mark the official launch of a major initiative to raise awareness and funds for our Canadian soldiers and their families. B.C. resident, Dennis Leclair, is heading this unique project that involves the sale and distribution of a commemorative CD containing musical tributes and personal messages from prominent Canadians. All profits will go directly to the Military Families Fund.

Leclair recently welcomed the support of the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of Defence, who will record a personal message to be included on the CD as well as a personal note for the jacket insert.

Leclair himself wrote the song tribute, after watching a deeply moving broadcast last November that showed the faces and names of every person that had been killed in Afghanistan. Determined to help, Leclair decided to personally fund the project, and set an ambitious goal - to get upwards of 450,000 copies of the CD into the hands of each member of our Canadian forces, their family members, military personnel and veterans worldwide.

Leclair has secured not only support, but also the participation from various military personnel. In addition, he has negotiated a distribution agreement for upwards of 80,000 copies of the commemorative CD.

“This is a very special and heartfelt project that I hope Canadians embrace as our anthem for our Canadian troops – for them to come home safely”, shares Leclair as he invites people across the country to join him in thanking our troops.

(Press Release) A Salute to our Canadian Troops …a timely interview for July 1 - June 30, 2009

Canada Day will mark the official launch of a major initiative to raise awareness and funds for our Canadian soldiers and their families. Dennis Leclair, a songwriter and recording artist, will be performing a special musical tribute – a song titled: “To Our Canadian Troops” - with the Kelowna City Band under the direction of Captain (Ret) Heather Davis.

Leclair wrote the song after he watched a deeply moving broadcast last November showing the faces and names of every person that had been killed in Afghanistan. Determined to help, his goal is to get upwards of 450,000 copies of a commemorative CD (containing the song as well as personal messages from prominent Canadians) into the hands of each member of our Canadian forces, their family members, military personnel and veterans worldwide. The CD can be purchased on behalf of a military family or for personal use, and all proceeds from this project will go to the Canadian Military Families Fund.

Leclair has already received widespread backing for the project from the Canadian Forces Personnel Support Agency, General Rick Hillier, former Chief of Defence staff and many others.

“This is a very special and heartfelt project that I hope Canadians embrace as our anthem for our Canadian troops – for them to come home safely”, shares Leclair as he invites people across the country to join him in thanking our troops.

Dennis is a strong communicator who speaks with both passion and sincerity. Your listeners will be inspired as they hear an ordinary man who is going beyond the call of duty to help soldiers answering the call to duty.

Minister of National Defence - June 24, 2009

We are privileged to have gained the support for the "To Our Canadian Troops" project from the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence. Minister MacKay will be writing and recording personal messages to our Canadian Forces members, their families and our Veterans. These messages will be included both on the commemorative CD and the insert jacket.

General Rick Hillier Support - May 30, 2009

On May 25th, 2009 I had the honour and privilege of meeting General Hillier and discussing the "To Our Canadian Troops" project with him.

General Hillier graciously offered his support and he will be in the near future recording his personal welcome home to our troops. This and other recording of personal messages to our Canadian Forces and a band version of the song will included on the special CD.

In addition, a tribute video based on the song "To Our Canadian Troops" is being considered for production over the next year.

The commemorative CD will be available to purchase on behalf of Canadian Force members by June 25th.

Video Introduction - May 23, 2009

A video introduction has been added to the site. Dennis discusses the "To Our Canadian Troops" CD project and background information related to the creation of the song. General Rick Hillier is featured in a second video outlining the services of the Military Families Fund.

RSS feed