San Augustine native comes home to play with U.S. Air Force Band of the West 'Top Flight' for the first time

San Augustine native comes home to play with U.S. Air Force Band of the West 'Top Flight' for the first time
Technical Sergeant Chad Newman of San Augustine
Technical Sergeant Chad Newman of San Augustine
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A San Augustine native has spent the past 25 years traveling the world playing music with one of the most elite bands in the United States.

Monday, The United States Air Force Band of the West "Top Flight," performed at SFA but they're not done performing in East Texas.

The USAF Band of the West made a stop in Nacogdoches Monday night on their East Texas-Houston tour and for one of the members it's a homecoming trip.

Technical Sergeant Chad Newman grew up in Nacogdoches and San Augustine.

"That's my hometown. That's where i grew up and that's the place where my family is and I get to come back and share our music, our mission, to the great people of San Augustine," Newman said.

Newman is one of six members in an elite rock band.

"It's not easy to be in the Air Force Band. It's not easy to get into the other branches. But I think we're the best but that's just my opinion," Newman said.

Those wishing to be in the Air Force Band have to go through a rigorous audition process to see if they have the musical chops. Newman says the band members are proficient in many genres of music ranging from jazz to pop, country and classic rock.

"You're a full time musician and as long as you're in the Air Force Band you're primary mission is music," Newman said. "It's wonderful. We get to play music and we get into the community, see different place, we get to travel the world. We do deploy and we go out and do a lot of community relations events and we support the troops, putting on a positive image for the Air Force."

Newman said the band's primary mission is to spread a positive message about the Air Force, recruit and educate the public through music clinics. This is the first time Newman has had the opportunity to play in his hometown and it's coming at a great time in his career. He is getting ready to retire.

"I get to end my career where it all started in San Augustine and I'm not going to stop playing music, it's just my military mission will be ending soon and what a great way to end it is in my two hometowns," Newman said.

If you missed the concert at SFA Monday night don't worry there is another opportunity Tuesday to check out "Top Flight"

They will be hosting a music clinic at San Augustine High School Tuesday and then host a free rock-pop-country concert at 6 PM.

It's at the high school and it's free and open to the public.

Copyright 2014 KTRE. All rights reserved.