United States Military Bands to be Cut?

It appears that a lot of military musical talent will soon be grounded or disbanded (no pun intended). In continuing budget cuts brought on by the austere budgets that are being faced, there will be far fewer military bands and shows to entertain and inspire the troops and the public.

Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade (Chief of Staff of the Army) U.S. Army Soldiers from the U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own", perform during the Presidential Inauguration Parade along Pennsylvania Avenue starting at the U.S. Capitol to the White House in Washington, D.C., Jan. 21, 2013. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade/ Released) DIGITAL
Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade (Chief of Staff of the Army) U.S. Army Soldiers from the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own”, perform during the Presidential Inauguration Parade along Pennsylvania Avenue starting at the U.S. Capitol to the White House in Washington, D.C., Jan. 21, 2013. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Teddy Wade/ Released)

As Written By Mike Fitzgerald for Stripes:

As recently as 2010, the Pentagon budgeted more than $500 million per year for military bands, with the largest chunk of that — $195 million — allocated to Army bands. The Marines in that year sponsored 600 musicians in 12 bands, costing $35 million, according to government figures.

Across the entire military, taxpayers were being asked to spend $1.5 billion annually on music and entertainment programs, according to one analysis.

But the winds of fiscal austerity surging through the Defense Department, as well as new spending priorities, have led to plans to shut down many of the military’s best-known music and entertainment programs.

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