By Nicole Heubusch
The internationally acclaimed U.S. Army Jazz Ambassadors, which includes a local soldier, presented a free public performance in Valrico last month. SSG Luke Brimhall, who plays the trombone in the band, graduated from Bloomingdale High school in 2003 and returned to play at his alma mater.
SSG Brimhall and the other soldiers in the band are “Musical Ambassadors of the Army” and have been performing in local communities.
The Jazz Ambassadors is the official touring big band of the United States Army. Formed in 1969, this 19-member ensemble has appeared in all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Japan, India and throughout Europe. It presents a diverse program of big band swing, Latin music, and contemporary jazz and popular tunes.
The Jazz Ambassadors play about 100 days out of the year, and put on concerts for the public to help them connect with communities, hand out free materials to music instructors, connect with veterans and help kids who are interested in music.
“This is a great way for the American people to connect with soldiers,” said SSG Brimhall. “We get to meet people and play patriotic selections and jazz music. We get to share our stories with our communities.”
SSG Brimhall joined the Jazz Ambassadors in Fall of 2012. He earned his Bachelor’s in jazz studies from the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. Before joining the Jazz Ambassadors, he performed on cruise ships and has been recorded on albums like The One O’ Clock Lab Band’s album Lab 2010 and Lab 2009 which was nominated for a Grammy for best large jazz ensemble. SSG Brimhall is a top call trombonist and an educator.
For any questions, e-mail SSG Brimhall at lukebrimhall@hot mail.com. For more information on the Army Jazz Ambassadors, visit www.armyfieldband.com/pages/ensembles/ja.html.