Yellowcard rocks servicemembers in Southwest Asia

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Michael O'Connor
  • 386th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs
More than 250 servicemembers assigned to the 386th Air Expeditionary Wing were infected with a special blend of rock and pop Jan. 12 when the band Yellowcard performed live for an hour at the base theater.

Yellowcard, a Los Angeles-based band, entertained American servicemembers during their final performance as part of their five-day United Service Organizations' sponsored tour for deployed Airmen, Sailors, Soldiers and Marines located at various locations throughout the region. 

Due to travel restrictions during their tour, the guitarists performed using their acoustic guitars, but still rocked the house and brought the crowd to its feet with a standing ovation.

"We tried to pick some songs to play that were relevant to your situation," said Ryan Key, a vocalist and guitar player for the band. "If you've ever had someone tell you, you were crazy for wanting to do something you believed in, (referencing American military servicemembers wanting to serve and protect their nation), this song is for you." 

Th band then played "Way Away."

Both Mr. Key and Ryan Mendez, a guitarist, have relatives who are or have served in the armed forces. Sean Mackin, a violinist and vocalist; Peter Mosely, a bass player; and Longineu Parsons III, the drummer, make up the remaining members of the group. 

"We've been trying to come to the Middle East for a couple of years now," said Mr. Key and Mr. Mendez. "Our nation's military is doing good things and we really believe in the people who are here and we want everyone to get home safe. They're doing their jobs, something they believe in, and we support them. The most important thing is to support the people who are here and what they're doing.

"The acoustics were awesome and all the songs had some sort of meaning to them," said Senior Airman Case McCarty, a 386th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron member and native of Long Beach, Calif. "The songs really hit home."

"I've heard their music before, but I've never really sat down and listened to them. Their lyrics really touch your emotions," said Airman 1st Class Rachel Anderson, a 386th Expeditionary Communications Squadron member who's serving on her first deployment. The native of San Bernardino, Calif., said, "I never thought I'd be watching and listening live to a band from back home way over here in Southwest Asia. It makes you feel proud to be from your home state." 

"It really means a lot to all of us that the Yellowcard band and other Americans in the entertainment industry are willing to put themselves in danger to perform for us here," said Senior Airman Jessica Van Oort, a 886th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron member and native of Barstow, Calif. 

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