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Members of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band have a question and answer period with the Combat Center band before they begin to practice for the concert April 26 at the Sunset Cinema.

Photo by Pfc. Michael T. Gams

‘President’s Own’ visits Combat Center

21 Apr 2009 | Pfc. Michael T. Gams

Eight members of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band visited the Combat Center band April 21 to provide mentorship and to prepare for their joint performance at the Sunset Cinema April 26 at 4 p.m.

The second annual Coats of Red and Blue Concert is free and open to the public. The doors will open at 3 p.m. and guests will be seated on a first-come, first-served basis.

The event will treat attendees to a unique musical experience, said Sgt. Steven Hofmann, a percussionist with the Combat Center band.

“The President’s Own” is uniquely charged with the duty of providing music for the President of the United States and the Commandant of the Marine Corps and often performs for visiting dignitaries and heads of state, according to the President’s Own Web site,

“The President’s Own” band has historic roots as the first Marine Corps band, so they bring a lot of history to the table when they perform, Hofman added.

The musicians, who came all the way from Washington, D.C., to visit the Combat Center, have a combined total of over 200 years of musical experience and have untold amounts of knowledge to pass on to the Combat Center band, said Lance Cpl. Jacob Drum, a saxophone player with the Combat Center band and native of Charlotte, N.C.

 “It’s a great opportunity to teach and learn from other talented musicians,” said Staff Sgt. Gabriel Gitman, a French horn player with “The President’s Own” band. “We can provide them with good and practical advice.”

The performance April 26 will be a welcomed relief from the day-to-day life in the desert and will showcase some unusually good music and talent, Drum said.

“I wouldn’t want to miss it,” he said.

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