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Airman by day, musician by night

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Carissa Wolff
  • 36th Wing Public Affairs
During the day, Senior Airman Rebecca Cook is a mild-mannered boundary protection specialist, but at night, the 36th Communications Squadron member transforms into a and a smooth note-blowing saxophonist. 

That's because Airman Cook is a first alto saxophonist with the Guam Territorial Band.

Although Airman Cook has only been with the band for a little more than a month, she's already making a positive impact on her fellow bandmembers.

"She's a good mentor for the younger students within the GTB due to her experience, dedication, talent and artistic level," said Max Ronquillo, the band's director.

The band usually plays at special local functions like the 2008 Tumon Bay Music Festival, but the band has been putting on so many good performances, they have been invited to participate in a 280 piece marching band during this summer's 2008 Olympics in China, according to the saxophonist. 

Airman Cook began her musical career when she was 5 years old by learning the basics of the clarinet from her sister, she said. She went on to play in several high school bands and has even formed a few rock bands during her time in the Air Force.

During that time, Airman Cook has become proficient in several instruments. Not only does she play the saxophone, but also the clarinet, trumpet, mellophone, double bass and electric bass. 

Learning how to play so many instruments might be a daunting task for most people, but Airman Cook said by doing so, it's helped her in other areas.

"A lot of studies say that music helps with your memory," said Airman Cook. "I can't remember what I ate yesterday, but I can remember a good horn lick and the band that plays it."

The band will be playing at several venues across the island this month with its next at the NEX II ribbon cutting at Naval Base Guam on April 5. You can read more about the band by logging onto its website http://www.gtb-guam.org or contact the director at ronquillom@gtb-guam.org.