BETHLEHEM, PA, SEPTEMBER 18, 2007 — The Blue Aces, a component of the United States Air Force Heritage of America Band, recently flew into StarCity Recording Company to record their original 12-track CD, which is expected to be released in early 2008. This is the first time a military rock band has created and recorded a musical project of totally original material; music and lyrics were written and arranged entirely by the band‘s members.
The CD contains a wide variety of musical styles — from sentimental country and patriotic tunes to hard rock — targeted towards the younger generations of Air Combat Command and the Air Force. Zak Rizvi engineered the project, which was multi-tracked in Studio “A” and overdubbed and mixed in StarCity‘s “Plus” room. Jeff Glixman, Jim Gentile, Lily Salinas, John Andrea and Julie Miller were also intricately involved in the project.
“I was the rookie producer on this project and learned a great deal in the process,” said MSgt Dale Eley. “I was fortunate to receive a great deal of wise advice from Jeff, Zak, and other members of the StarCity family.”
The Blue Aces are appointed by the unit commander; the current personnel have been playing together since October 2006. Members include, MSgt Eley, Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge (NCOIC), musical director and bass; MSgt Eldon Sully, guitar; MSgt Ron Larsen, keyboards; TSgt Mike Shepperd, drums/ percussions; TSgt Brent Swaney, sax and audio engineer; SSgt Natalie Madison, vocals; and SrA Andre Rascoe, vocals. All of the musicians in the Blue Aces have performed with concert bands, big bands, jazz combos, and more. Collectively, the band has over 100 years of musical experience to draw from.
“It is very common for the needs of the Air Force to require relocations and people frequently retire,” continued MSgt Eley. “We are fortunate to be able to take advantage of this opportunity to make an original CD that will permanently bond the seven of us together.”
The Blue Aces perform their variety of popular music styles for civilian and military audiences alike, at military functions and in forward deployed locations in support of the men and women in the country‘s armed forces. They perform at festivals and large events to spread the messages of the Air Force to the general public. The band also performs at schools and public functions in support of recruiters.
“The technical resources and amenities offered by StarCity were clearly the best choice for this particular project,” continued MSgt Eley. “The facilities are simply incredible. They have terrific spaces and state-of-the-art gear. The thought and ergonomic foresight put into the design of the building and every room proved extremely logical and conducive to making great music, comfortably.”
The CD will be available for download on the Heritage of America Band‘s website as soon as the mastering is complete. Target date for completion is October 2007
“I assigned MSgt Eley and the Blue Aces to record an album that will inspire the men and women of the Air Force, our sister services and allies, as well as our fellow Americans,” said Major Douglas Monroe, Commander of the USAF Heritage of America Band. “The Blue Aces returned from StarCity with a recording of great music. I couldn’t be prouder with the results they’ve achieved.”
The USAF Heritage of America Band is an Air Force band with 47 musicians, comprised of several different musical groups. The two major groups are the popular music group, the Blue Aces and the Concert Band. The Concert Band breaks down further into a jazz ensemble, and various smaller groups including a brass quintet, woodwind quintet, and a Celtic ensemble.
A world-class facility located in Bethlehem, PA, StarCity Recording Company offers clientele more than 50 years of combined professional recording experience and the state of the art in 5.1 surround sound.