NASHVILLE, Tenn. — More than 200,000 audiocassettes valued at more than $1 million were on their way Wednesday to Saudi Arabia aboard a Tennessee Air National Guard cargo plane, a gift from Nashville's music industry to American troops.
Every major country and Christian label donated thousands of cassettes in a project dubbed Operation Desert Song. Included were 50,000 cassettes donated by country music's current hot new singer, Garth Brooks, who was on hand for the cargo loading.
"What can I say about how much we owe these people who are risking their lives for us?" Brooks said. "This is little enough, and I only wish we could do more to help them."
Including religious music was no easy feat. "There had been considerable difficulty on that score," Amy Grant, a top gospel singer said recently, "but they finally got it cleared through the military."