Bon Voyage with the Band Day One
By Airman 1st Class Madeleine Richards, 146 Airlift Wing
/ Published June 30, 2014
CHANNEL ISLANDS AIR NATIONAL GUARD STATION, Calif. -- I have been out of tech. school for less than a year now and recently transferred to the 146th Airlift Wing from my original base in Indiana. This is my first tour with any base and my first time giving the journalism side of the job a try, so go easy on me when you are reading through this attempt at a blog. I will be taking pictures of the 562nd Air Force Band of the West Coast for the next two weeks and I am excited learn what they are all about.
On the first night of our trip, the band performed in a nice little town called Ojai, California. By the time I arrived around 3pm, set up for the performance was complete and our members were ready for their 7:30 pm show time at the Libbey Bowl Amphitheatre. While they were rehearsing, I had the chance to set up my cameras and hear a little preview of the show that would take place later. Once the first song played, I knew I was in for a good trip. The band performance lasted about and hour and a half and to say they just "sounded pretty good" is an understatement. They were amazing! From singing, to flute solos, beautiful music, and my favorite part, when they asked the Veterans in the audience to stand up towards the end of the show! I had a few audience members approach me after the show was over just to express how much they enjoyed it too. When the last song was over I heard quiet a few audience members saying they wish they could hear one more song! I'd say that is some pretty good feedback.
After the show ended and the audience cleared out, the band started to pack up their equipment. I never stopped to think about who hauled all of the sound equipment, instruments, chairs, uniforms, music stands... you get the idea. Well the band does it all! I was amazed by how much work they have to put in to prepare and clean up for a show. This was a great way to start my first trip and I feel like I really hit the jackpot when I was chosen to travel with the band. I am excited to see the rest of their performances. Utah bound on Friday! Let the road trip begin.