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Stephen Arnold Music creates theme for ‘KRQE Cares’ campaign

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Stephen Arnold Music recently collaborated with KRQE on an inspirational original theme song for the Albuquerque television station’s KRQE Cares campaign.

“Making a Difference” is being used in promos and other marketing media supporting the annual fundraiser, which provides shoes and more to local children from families experiencing financial hardship. The campaign runs year round, culminating with a back to school phone bank.

In its ninth year, KRQE Cares was developed by the station’s Media Group Community Relations Director Carolyn Rush to address one of the biggest needs of children in a state where one out of four students live in poverty.

“Unfortunately, New Mexico ranks 50th in the nation for child well-being. We work directly with Title 1 schools to put new shoes on every child in the school,” said Rush. “Each year, KRQE, our viewers, and the New Mexico community work together to supply thousands of pairs of new shoes to kids. We’re a local station with a tradition of community service and this is our way of making a difference.”

The song embodies the campaign’s positive spirit, according to Stephen Arnold Music President Chad Cook.

“We were impressed by how well it’s been embraced by the local community,” he said. “The campaign is optimistic and upbeat, and the song reflects that. It tugs at the heartstrings and conveys hope. We want to get people engaged and inspired.”

“Making a Difference” was crafted to work with both broadcast and online media, adapt to different time formats and complement a range of visuals.

“It also needed to function effectively with full lyrics and as an instrumental while projecting emotional force from start to finish,” Cook notes. “We even produced a version that features kids’ voices. There’s just a touch here and there —enough to give you an authentic human connection without becoming syrupy.” The song’s lyrics begin with the promise, “great things happen when New Mexico pulls together,” and end with the promise “It’s New Mexico’s spirit we share Kir-Kee Cares.”


Stephen Arnold Music has collaborated frequently with KRQE Media Group, providing sonic branding and original music for each of the four television stations it operates in New Mexico.

“They created a sonic identity for a station that previously lacked one, and reaffirmed the identity of another,” said Creative Services Director Bill Case. “They customized an existing theme for the morning newscast on a third station that helped propel it from a distant third in its market to competing for number one. They’re just so good.”

Cook says that Stephen Arnold Music is especially proud to contribute to KRQE Cares. “It’s rare to find a station with such a strong commitment to philanthropy,” he states. “The station works very hard to make this campaign a success and ensure that it serves kids. Their staff not only deliver the shoes, they get down on their knees to make sure they fit. They give each student a book and snacks and make them feel special. It’s personalized and genuine.”

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