• September 19, 2014

Ivy band brings hot sounds to cold Baghdad

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Wednesday, January 23, 2008 4:54 am | Updated: 5:09 pm, Wed Aug 15, 2012.

By Staff Sgt. Luis Orengo

Multinational Division-Baghdad public affairs

CAMP LIBERTY, Iraq — Cold weather in Baghdad is not an excuse to miss the ravishing-hot sounds of Ritmo Latino (Latin Rhythm) ensemble, as it performed Thursday in front of eager spectators at the Division Morale, Welfare and Recreation tent.

The group is part of the various musical ensembles that comprise the 4th Infantry Division Band, each one with a different musical style, but all with the same mission.

“Our main purpose here is to give the audience a chance to get away from their daily routine and stress and enjoy their evening in a very nice way,” said Sgt. Luis Feliciano, bass player and director of the ensemble. “This way, we help keep the morale up while performing.”

The ensemble’s musicians are from Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and places as far away as Bolivia and Puerto Rico.

“After our last deployment in Iraq, the ensemble lost 70 percent of its members due to moving and changes,” said Feliciano. “This group is basically a new one, and we have been practicing for the last eight months. We have come a long way in order to please our audience.”

For a little over two hours, the crowd listened to the swing of merengue, salsa, bachata and reggaeton, which — though they may be strange musical terms in the English dictionary — gave the audience the opportunity to travel to faraway places without leaving Iraq.

“Experiences like this one are special because it helps to bond soldiers, Marines, airmen, sailors and civilians in a special way. It really is an important morale event for every one,” said Air Force Capt. Hallie Day.

For the members of the ensemble, the purpose of bringing a little joy to every one is worth the effort.

“We are musicians, and this is what we do: bringing joy and entertainment here or anywhere it’s needed,” Feliciano said. “We are doing it for everybody deployed here, and if they dance, laugh and enjoy themselves with our performance, then we have done our job right.”

More about

More about

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 5 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 6 Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Welcome to the discussion.

KDH Poll

Loading…
Altrusa plans clothing drive Saturday at Cove Wal-Mart
Posted: September 19, 2014

COPPERAS COVE — For many low-income and homeless families in the Central Texas area, finding clothing is not as easy as taking a trip to the nearest department store.

more »
Public invited to Dems’ meeting Saturday
Posted: September 16, 2014

The executive committee of the Bell County Democrats will meet from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at Agri-Life Extension, 1605 N. Main St., Belton.

more »