Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Let's put on a show!

by Senior Chief Musician William Mulligan
As the Commodores' master of ceremonies, I often tell our audiences that we do a different show every night, and it's true! We travel with a large book of about 100 musical arrangements. Our musical director, Chief Musician Rob Holmes, puts together a new program every night. This certainly keeps the members of the band on their toes, everyone has to bring their "A" game to the stage every night! He does a great job of keeping everyone involved. Chief Holmes says, "We are fortunate to have six writers and a band full of uniquely talented solo voices. Incorporating them into each program makes for an exciting show."

While the show changes every night, there are some constants. Chief Holmes always programs a mix of the old and the new in big band jazz; from classics by jazz greats such as Basie, Kenton, and Ellington to original arrangements by members of the band that you can't hear anywhere else. We always play some hits from the WWII era, and we always finish with our "Armed Forces Salute." We are honored to have so many veterans attend our shows, we don't want to leave the stage without paying tribute to them.

Musician 1st Class Casey Elliott with her parents after the concert
Certainly one of the highlights of our shows on this tour has been the wonderful singing of Musician 1st Class Casey Elliott. She comes to us "on loan" from the Navy Band Sea Chanters, where she is the associate enlisted conductor, and we are thrilled to have her! Her background is primarily in choral singing, she is making her debut performing in front of a jazz ensemble. Petty Office Elliott says "I love my job because I get a chance to train in another genre while performing with world-class musicians." I think our audiences so far would agree, she sounds perfectly at home in front of the band!

A native of Texas, Elliott is very happy to be returning home on this tour. She attended high school in Borger, Texas, and was a music education major at Texas Tech. She is grateful for the outstanding musical education she received in the great state of Texas, and so are we!

We would also like to express our gratitude to Bill and Teresa Robertson, proprietors of the Big Apple Deli on the town square of Snyder. Normally closed on Sundays, they opened their fantastic deli just for us, so that we could dine there following our show at the Coliseum. We had a great time, thanks!

About the Author

Senior Chief Musician William Mulligan is a native of Columbus, Ohio and joined the Navy Band in 1997. He is the Commodores’ master of ceremonies and alto saxophone instrumentalist.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As a Sea Chanter "MOM " I am thrilled and proud for Casey ! She is so special ! Proud of the Commodores as well. Best wishes and safe travels on the tour !