Desert Freedom Band Fills Summer Air With Music

The band has grown to more than 65 members since forming in 2001

The Desert Winds Freedom Band performs at 4 p.m. June 8 in the Community Room of the Rancho Mirage Public Library.

From what began with a quartet, the Desert Winds Freedom Band has grown to more than 65 members serving the greater Palm Springs area since forming in 2001 by Gary Moline.

Their ninth performance of the season will be held at 4 p.m. June 8 in the Community Room of the Rancho Mirage Public Library. Admission is free. Seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Desert Winds Freedom Band’s “Summer Pops Concert” includes a mix of patriotic, classical, pop, swing and Broadway songs, such as selections from the musical, “Hairspray”; a sax quartet playing “The Long Ar-ranger Goes Sax Mad”; a swing medley of “In the Miller Mood” featuring “In the Mood”, “Moonlight Serenade”. “I’ve Got a Gal in Kalamazoo”, “Serenade in Blue”, “Little Brown Jug” and “Anvil Chorus”, and an Argentine tango titled “El Choclo”.

Since its fifth season, the Desert Winds Freedom Band has kept a concert schedule of at least 10 dates featuring gay and gay-friendly musicians who rehearse once a week. Some are professionals while others are rediscovering their love of music since their youth.

As members of the Lesbian and Gay Band Association (LGBA), the Desert Winds Freedom Band had a pair of its members chosen to participate with the LGBA to march in President Barack Obama’s 2013 inauguration parade. The LGBA, founded in Chicago in 1982 with seven members, now includes 37 member organizations in the U.S., Canada, Autralia and the United Kingdom.

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