AFCENT BAND ROCKS 2018 U.S. NATIONAL DAY Published March 9, 2018 By Staff Sgt. Colton Elliott 380th Air Expeditionary Wing AL DHAFRA AIR BASE, United Arab Emirates -- United States Air Forces Central Command band rocked as Americans and Emirates joined together to celebrated the birth of the United States a few months early, in the United Arab Emirates. July 4 marks one of the most important days in the U.S. calendar however, Independence Day is celebrated in the early months of the year for citizens to take advantage of cooler weather. The AFCENT band provided live music during this year’s United States National Day event which was hosted on March 7, by the U.S. Embassy at the The Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Resort, Dubai. Paul R. Malik, U.S. Consul General in Dubai was the guest speaker for the ceremony and reflected on the enduring partnership the U.S. shares with the UAE. “The United States has always viewed the UAE as a stronger more capable partner in addressing the security economic and social challenges of the region and of our times,” said Malik. “We enjoy mutually beneficial cooperation which also has allowed us to shape and advance the vision of a better world for mankind.” The AFCENT band, who is currently made up of Guardsmen deployed from McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base, Tennessee also known as the Band of the South used music to bridge language, cultural, society and socio-economic differences. “Whether we’re playing a concert, social event or in this case different country, music acts as universal language,” said Tech Sgt. Spencer Herron, musical director form the AFCENT band.”Music has always been a powerful tool in breaking barriers and promoting cross-culture appreciation.” The AFCENT Band is the only permanently assigned U.S. Air Force band to the Central Command area of responsibility. Based in Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. “We owe our gratitude to the United States Air Force Central Command band which provided us with tonight's all-American entertainment,” said Malik.