New ensemble plays for veterans, mayor listens

Michael Sampson--Members of "Resound," the new percussion ensemble, performs for local veterans at Applebees in downtown Riverside.

The parking lot at Applebee’s in downtown Riverside was filled with the cars of American military veterans on Nov. 11. Also occupying the parking lot was a host of percussion instruments that belonged to California Baptist University’s newest ensemble “Resound.”

Named after the passage Psalm 150:5, Resound performed outside the restaurant at the request of the General Manager, Charlie German.

German said the performance, along with the free meals offered to veterans by Applebee’s all across the nation, was meant to honor those who served in the military.

“It’s entertainment. It’s supposed to be a fun thing for Riverside, for the veterans,” German said.

The 11 member ensemble played three sets of five songs, including an arrangement of “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” arranged especially for this occasion.

“It’s beautiful,” a veteran, who observed the ensemble in the company of family members and a close friend, said.

Mayor Ron Loveridge and City Councilman Mike Gardener listened briefly to the ensemble.

German secured the ensemble’s appearance by way of a musical hostess.

Jenni Nickels, employed by Applebee’s for the past four months, is a clarinetist for the University Choir and Orchestra at CBU.

German approached Nickels, wondering if UCO could play for the event.

“I kind of laughed, because we’re 150 people and there’s nowhere for us to be. So, he asked if I could get a smaller group to come out,” Nickels said.

After that, Nickels asked Guy Holliday if the Jazz Band would be available to perform. Holliday sounded interested, but was occupied with other matters.

This left open an opportunity for the newest ensemble to get out into the community and play a few sets somewhere other than school.

“We were very excited and very nervous,” Chris Richie, student leader of Resound, said.

Richie is not only the student leader for the group, he is one of the founders.

He and Matthew McConnell, faculty adviser for Resound, proposed their idea to start a percussion ensemble to the Dean of the School of Music, Gary Bonner, earlier this school year.

“After explaining what the group was and how we were going to do it, Dr. Bonner approved it,” Richie said.

For Richie, a music education major, leading this group is preparation for the future.

“The opportunity to lead a group like this is something that will definitely prepare me for leading larger groups in the future, as well as just forming the group,” Richie said. “All the logistical stuff behind it is definitely a preparation.”

On Veteran’s day, in particular, Richie said, “It is important to show respect to those who have served our country. And its important to show that we as a school, we as a music program, can support not only the community but specific people and a part of our country that has helped everyone else.”

About Jenny Miner

I am a journalism major and long-time Banner staff member and will, this year, be serving as the Editor-in-Chief. I just returned from an intense semester in Washington, DC, where I learned a lot about the future of journalism. I am looking forward to one last year working for The Banner and am hopeful that the team will make great strides in keeping up with the rapidly changing journalism field, as well as do our job to keep the CBU community informed about all news California Baptist University.