HomeNewsArticle Display

AFCENT band builds relationships with a universal language

The U.S. Air Forces Central Command Band collaborates with local musician near Salalah, Oman Aug. 12, 2018. The U.S. Embassy in Oman organized the cultural exchange. The AFCENT Band has a mission to develop relationships across the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility on behalf of the United States and the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Dustin Doyle)

The U.S. Air Forces Central Command band collaborates with local musician near Salalah, Oman, Aug. 12, 2018. The U.S. Embassy in Oman organized the cultural exchange. The AFCENT Band has a mission to develop relationships across the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility on behalf of the United States and the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Dustin Doyle)

AL UDEID AIR BASE, Qatar (AFNS) -- The U.S. Air Forces Central Command band is the only deployed band in the Air Force, covering 17 of the 20 countries in the area of responsibility. Some places are so remote that the locals have never experienced live music.

Capt. Dustin Doyle, AFCENT band officer in charge, is the orchestrator for this one-of-a-kind band. His duty: promote and educate the band’s mission and coordinate with local officials and embassies to find venues for the band to perform.

“Our mission is to assist the AFCENT commander create positive ways for our two cultures to engage and develop relationships on behalf of the U.S. Air Force and the United States of America,” said Doyle. “We can become the tip of the spear, using soft power, to engage with music. This allows us to enhance U.S. Central Command’s theater security cooperation efforts and ultimately provides the band with more future engagements.”

With performances ranging from playing for dignitaries to children and community elders, these expert musicians take each performance seriously. The number of gigs the AFCENT band plays within their 3-month tour rivals what the stateside Air Force bands would play in a whole year.

“On average, the AFCENT band performs 45 times during their 3-month tour; roughly a concert every-other-day,” said Doyle. “This mission has a very high operations tempo compared to bands in the states. We seldom practice because, just like every other job in the Air Force, once your boots hit the ground we are tasking you to perform.”

The multitude of performances couldn’t happen without the thousands of pounds of music equipment that needs to be packed specifically for each concert. However, unlike back home, these Airmen musicians move virtually everything themselves.

“We have over 5,000 lbs of equipment we have to lug to each performance,” said Master Sgt. Christopher Stahl, AFCENT band superintendent. “We load them onto custom built pallets, built to specifications noted by the airframe’s loadmasters, for every trip we take. Once we land, we unload, set up, break down and pack up everything for the next gig. Compared to the states, it’s the same process except with fewer people, rehearsal and prep time and rest between performances.”

The U.S. Air Force has used music for decades as an effective diplomatic tool. Music, in and of itself, has an innate quality to exist without language barriers and bring people together despite vast differences.

“Back in 2013, we had several gigs in an area in Kyrgyzstan where a large portion of the population was illiterate,” said Doyle. “We worked with the U.S. Embassy to engage with several small villages and inform them about their culture and heritage and share U.S. culture and heritage through music and picture handouts. Even with the language barrier, we used music as a unique way to bridge cultures and develop relationships in an otherwise tough environment.”

“I’m proud of what we do and I’m humbled to work with musicians and Airmen of such quality on so many levels,” said Doyle. “We go to places with people who have never seen or interacted with Americans and we leave lasting impressions of that they think about the U.S. Air Force. Not only that, we also represent the professionalism of our Airmen. It’s humbling to be entrusted with such a high honor.”

Engage

Twitter
RT @DefenseOne: JOIN US TODAY @ 2 P.M. ET when our “State of Defense” series continues with a live interview featuring U.S. Air Force Chief…
Twitter
RT @DeptofDefense: Teaching service members how to effectively shoot weapons. That’s the job of Combat Arms Training and Management. Watch…
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Team - 25 years ago today, we lost 24 U.S. & Canadian Airmen in the Yukla 27 crash. It was a surveillance training so…
Twitter
Taking care of Airmen and their families! https://t.co/AVeidzDPcV
Twitter
Wherever Airmen go, the Federal Voting Assistance Program ensures their voice is heard. @FVAP works to ensure servi… https://t.co/tkJts1yo3Z
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: For #HispanicHeritageMonth, we're celebrating the stories of Hispanic & Latino Airmen! @188thWG SSgt. Emmanuel Gutierrez…
Twitter
#TotalForce Airmen participate in night operations during a base-wide, total force exercise @HAFB. Airmen & pilots… https://t.co/kJYNKwHY7n
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: California fires/smoke no match for UTA Airmen - https://t.co/pJysQ6snRh (Story by the @940Wing) #ReserveReady #ReserveRes
Twitter
Whistleblowers are NOT insider threats. Learn the difference and how you can appropriately report questionable gove… https://t.co/AaTvBfHcTv
Twitter
SrA Denise Arabie, 319th Operations Support Squadron radar approach controller @319thRW, describes the importance o… https://t.co/zkwMx6Qw3i
Twitter
RT @173rdFW: "I may have lost everything, but thanks to the support we’ve found here, I’m going to be back on my feet inside of a few weeks…
Twitter
.@GenCQBrownJr & @cmsaf_official sat down and discussed how the Air Force will continue exempting Airmen from PT t… https://t.co/bWVig9fSOW
Twitter
SrA Mark Gonzalez describes how his job enables the B-2 Spirit Stealth Bomber to support the Bomber Task Force depl… https://t.co/sceKCtM3Pz
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: Our Airmen come from all walks of life — and we are stronger for it. Staff Sgt. Kalinin, 56th Force Support Squadron ALS…
Twitter
“It's critical to have that diversity in the Air Force that we have today because it is truly through that diversit… https://t.co/RIDQDjdlCr
Twitter
F-16 Fighting Falcons assigned to the 18th Aggressor Squadron @EielsonAirForce takeoff in support of exercise Valia… https://t.co/cf0raGgEUD
Twitter
RT @USAF_ACC: "This test, and others like it, can shape the future of the MQ-9, as we continue to increase its relevance in great power com…
Twitter
"We cannot rest on our laurels. It is all about the people, folks, and they will guarantee our readiness, and are f… https://t.co/BsNDUSw0wE
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: USAFCENT Airmen and coalition partners are executing missions of national, regional and global importance and Exercise Desert…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,281,142
Follow Us