Travis Brass Band livens up “Music Tuesday”

Edward Hewitt |Staff Writer|

Travis Brass Band thrills the audience with an energetic battle between its two trumpeters. The duo entertained the audience with a round robin performance of a brass version of the “Macarena” song, while battling for the title of the band’s best trumpet player.

CSUSB’s music department hosted its annual “Music Tuesday” concert Jan. 24. The featured artist was none other than the Travis Brass Band of the Air Force’s Golden Band of the West.

The Travis Brass Band is a sub group (brass section), of the Air Force’s Golden Band of the West which consist of 45 active duty Air Force members. The musical group consists of six members, all of whom play one of the band’s five featured instruments.

Airmen First Class Stephen Denison and Mathew Garza are the bands trumpet players. Staff Sgt. Robert Mayes plays the French horn, Airman 1st Class Travis Harde plays the euphonium, Staff Sgt. Jill Corbett the tuba and Tech. Sgt. Christi L. McGowan plays the drums.

Their sound is an eclectic one. During their performance they played a variety of music styles ranging from traditional marching band to more up tempo covers of music from artist like Duke Ellington.

The band bases their playlist off of the anticipated audience, which ensures their performances resonate with all ages.

As the only West Coast Air Force band, their coverage area is broad and includes the states of Calif., Nev., Wash., Idaho and Ore. This dictates that they cover all musical military ceremonies in addition to community outreach functions such as “Music Tuesday” at CSUSB.

During the CSUSB version of the show, the band made an effort to incorporate the audience by including facts about themselves, a background to each piece of music they performed and a little showmanship with a Macarena musical battle between the members of the trumpet section.

In addition to performing live music, the band conducts education clinics which can range from the band performing, answering questions, assistance in teaching master classes, one on one tutoring, and technique tutorials for students that are interested in brass music instruments.

The overall goal for the clinics is to provide a more hands-on experience to students and the community at large.

In addition to West Coast tours and performances, the musicians are active duty members of the Air Force. As Tech. Sgt. Christi L. McGowan explained, “We are members of the AMC (Air Mobility Command), which not only consist of fighter jets, but humanitarian efforts. Whenever commercial air can’t handle the situation, we step in and help provide relief.”

“In addition to the importance of music, the bands overall message, we pay homage to veterans and those currently serving, recruiting new members and displaying the wide variety of positions the Air Force has to offer,’’ stated Sgt. McGowan.

The Travis Brass Band of the Air Force’s Golden Band of the West provides a musical experience that all ages can enjoy and an experience that people from all walks of life can relate to.

Despite musical preferences or personal likes, the Travis Brass Band is sure to provide an enjoyable experience for all.


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