Following September 11th, 2001, many “Pershing’s Own” Soldiers remember that as a “quiet” time--a time without music. Our typical missions stopped as the band shifted to assist at the Pentagon. One of the first concerts after that “quiet” time was a concert in New York City for the first responders and rescue workers that heroically worked at Ground Zero. The following are memories of those performances from Sgt. Major Donald Hoffman, clarinetist and Concert Band Element Leader: “We had previously scheduled a concert for the band to play in NYC at the Lincoln Center that fall. We almost cancelled, but it was decided that we should still go ahead with the performance and honor the fallen, in addition to the first responders and rescue workers that were onsite at the Towers. I honestly don’t remember much about the concert music, but it was an incredible performance atmosphere with the audience – so moving, uplifting, yet also sad. On that trip, we also took part in the memorial services that were held every Sunday morning at Ground Zero. We traveled in by bus and were able to see the surrounding area covered in rubble and ash from the towers. We had a standing performance of a few tunes right next to the towers, still smoking with pieces of concrete and metal twisted everywhere. Again, I don’t remember much about what we played, but I think it was similar to the music we perform in Arlington National Cemetery for funerals. The main thing I remember about the service was watching grown men crying as we played. It still is the most significant event in my career here in the band. I don’t remember the music, just that the experience was overwhelming.”
"Love and Light" was commissioned in loving memory of 1st Lt. Elizabeth Elliot's daughter Madison, who was born without a heartbeat on November 8th, 2018. Written by composer @brianbalmages , the piece seeks to find the "love and light" that time reveals on the other side of grief. This year marks two decades since September 11th, 2001. Many Americans will never forget that day--though many now weren't yet born to remember it. We, as a nation, will never forget the lives lost and the bravery that followed September 11th, 2001. No matter where you were, or what you remember, may we all continue to seek love and light together, as a nation.
The percussionists at "Pershing's Own" really think you can make anything an instrument! Influenced by American composer John Cage (born Sept. 5, 1912), Staff Sgt. Brian Blume wrote "Persistence," an original piece that's equal parts contemporary and groovy! ✌🏻🥁
History snapshot: ”Pershing's Own" provided musical support during World War II, first in North Africa, and later in Europe, close to the front, between 1943 and 1945. The band was based in Algiers from July of 1943 until April of 1944, and was housed at the Bon Pasteur monastery. "Pershing's Own" is pictured here performing a concert in Algiers on September 29, 1943. (Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress).
"My dad and uncles grew up in South Korea during and after the Korean War, and they saw first-hand the support, friendship, and alliance with the United States. They all served in the South Korean Army (all South Korean males have compulsory service obligations), and one of my uncles even served alongside American Soldiers in Vietnam. Eventually, all the brothers immigrated to the US and my dad brought me and my sister here in 1988 in search of a better life for the next generation and the “American Dream.” I feel very fortunate to have grown up in the US, to gain citizenship, to go to college, and be able to give back to a country that has given so much not only to me, but to my family and my ancestral homeland. There’s always special meaning for me when rendering final honors to Korean War Veterans in @arlingtonnatl, to know that their service and sacrifice helped support and defend my father, uncles, and grandparents. When I came to The United States Army Band "Pershing's Own," I was told that the Ceremonial Band Officer in Charge (OIC) position was the “best assignment in the @usarmy” and that’s proved to be 100% true. Every day I have the privilege to serve our Nation and our Veterans, knowing that they’ve had an impact not only on my family, but countless other families around the world." - Major Dae Kim, OIC, The U.S. Army Ceremonial Band
The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” was founded in 1922 by General John J. Pershing, who believed that bands played a vital role in troop morale and efficiency. Since then, the premiere band of the U.S. Army has consistently been present at historically significant events, including those of diplomatic importance. In October 1957, Queen Elizabeth II made her first Royal visit to the United States. After touring Jamestown and Williamsburg VA, she and Prince Philip arrived in Washington DC. The Queen made the trip to Arlington National Cemetery where she laid two wreaths, the first at the Canadian Cross of Sacrifice which honors Americans who served in Canadian Forces during World War I, and the second at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Taps sounded by “Pershing’s Own” bugler, George Myers. Photo courtesy of Jari Villanueva
On August 26th, 2021, 13 service members died as the result of an enemy attack while supporting non-combatant evacuation operations in Kabul, Afghanistan. The United States Army Band's most important mission is to honor our Nation's heroes. Though we will never be able to repay the debts we owe them, we would like to pay our respects to these fallen heroes with a performance of "Taps." Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Darin T. Hoover Marine Corps Sgt. Johanny Rosario Pichardo Marine Corps Sgt. Nicole L. Gee Marine Corps Cpl. Hunter Lopez Marine Corps Cpl. Daegan W. Page Marine Corps Cpl. Humberto A. Sanchez Marine Corps Lance Cpl. David L. Espinoza Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Rylee J. McCollum Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Dylan R. Merola Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Kareem M. Nikoui Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jared M. Schmitz Navy Corpsman Maxton W. Soviak Army Staff Sgt. Ryan C. Knauss Honor is theirs, who knew the path of honor. #HonorThem #HonorTheFallen
Women's Equality Day commemorates the certification of the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote. It reminds us of the hurdles overcome by the heroic women who faced violence and discrimination to propel the women’s movement forward. Today, we celebrate the female Soldiers who selflessly serve in The United States Army Band "Pershing's Own."
Did you watch our 1812 Overture Concert this year at @usarmymuseum? The Audio Team at The @USArmyBand worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure everything ran smoothly. They were responsible for all things microphone, livestream, recording, and let's not forget video! #DYK The team used 129 audio inputs and 22,000 watts of power for the PA system alone? 🤯 We appreciate all you do to make the band look and sound great!