1st Marine Division Band

1st Marine Division Band Performs Throughout Disneyland Resort for 4th of July Festivities

The 1st Marine Division Band and its breakout group, the Old Breed Brass Band, performed at the Disneyland Resort this week as a part of the 4th of July festivities at The Happiest Place on Earth. The bands entertained and inspired guests at both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure during performances on July 4th and 5th.

The Old Breed Brass Band performed at the Pixar Pier Band Shall on the 4th. The full 1st Marine Division Band also marched through Disney California Adventure along the parade route on the 4th of July as first. The band then headed over to Disneyland to participate in the patriotic flag retreat. On the 5th, the full 1st Marine Division Band performed first on the Avengers HQ building in Avengers Campus. The band then performed in Paradise Gardens Park a short time later. Finally, the band marched to Sleeping Beauty Castle and performed a set there before making its way up through the park to it’s a small world. This was the first time a military ensemble performed in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland.

Through the course of the two days, the Daps Magic team followed the band as much as possible as part of its 4th of July coverage. Below are videos of the band on both the 4th and 5th of July. This includes performances at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure.

1st Marine Division Band – 4th of July

Parade Route | Disney California Adventure

Patriotic Flag Retreat | Disneyland

1st Marine Division Band – 5th of July

Avengers Campus | Disney California Adventure

Paradise Gardens Park | Disney California Adventure

Sleeping Beauty Castle | Disneyland

The 1st Marine Division Band was created in 1940 during World War II. It was a part of the Pacific Theater of Operations. During the beginning of the war, the band actually had to put down its instruments and be front line troops for four months during the first ground offensive against Japan. The Division was then relieved at Guadalcanal and sent to Australia for rest and rehabilitation. It was in Australia that the band also resumed musical duties. The band played so frequently in Australia during the war that it affectionately became known as “Australia’s Own.” After the war, the band returned to the United States.

During the Korean War, the band once again saw action. When North Korean forces swam across the Nakdong river and attacked, the band had to hold their own. The band continued to see action during the Korean War. It also was pulled into the Vietnam War as well. The band would often perform during the day and then at night have guard duty overlooking the encampment for the 1st Marine Division headquarters. The band did see combat when a North Vietnamese platoon crept up on them, leading to hand to hand combat. This led to three dead band members and four wounded.

During the Persian Gulf War, the band was the first one to be ordered to the Persian Gulf. It also ended up being the only band to go to Kuwait. During the war, the band provided perimeter security, swept for mines, cleared paths through bunker systems, and helped secure battlefields. All of this was done while also providing musical support. After a seven-month deployment, the band returned to the United States and performed for each unit that returned home. Operation Iraqi Freedom saw the band return to the Persian Gulf and providing security. The band also performed throughout Iraq to boost moral. The band returned to Iraq multiple times and had both security and musical missions on these deployments.

The 1st Marine Division Band is made up of approximately 50 Marine musicians. The band provides musical support to the 1st Marine Division. It also performs for other tenant commands aboard Camp Pendleton, the area, and throughout the United States. The band performs as a military marching band, wind ensemble, jazz band, popular music group, jazz combo, brass band, woodwind quintet, brass quintet, and saxophone quartet. Each year the band has around 400 engagements. Through the years this has included 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, the State Funeral for President Ford, the Tournament of Roses Parade, annual performances at the Center for the Performing arts, in Escondido, California, the Swallow’s Day Parade in San Juan Capistrano, and most recently, the Disney Magic Music Days in Downtown Disney and San Francisco Fleet Week.

The band is one of three groups that performed during the 4th of July week at the Disneyland Resort. This included Mobility of the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West and a rock group from the California Army National Guard 40th Infantry Division Band. These bands performed throughout the week at the Disneyland Resort.

What do you think of the performances of the 1st Marine Division Band? What is your favorite song they performed? What is your favorite set? Share your thoughts and opinions in the comments below!