Nalani's Blog

Here's an informative article I wrote for work, about work! 

Max Impact Kicks Off First Summer Concert Series Since Deployment

by Technical Sgt. Nalani Quintello 

6/30/2017 - Washington, D.C. -- Max Impact, the Premier Rock Band of the United States Air Force, will kick off their first summer concert series since last year's ninety-day deployment to Southeast Asia. 

Instead of performing around the nation's capital region, Max Impact spent last summer visiting six countries in the Middle East, acting as musical diplomats and positively representing the United States through the soft power asset of music. While deployed, Max Impact built new relationships and strengthened bonds with allies, showcasing popular music at international schools, embassies and NATO military bases throughout Southwest Asia. Although deployments can be gratifying, Max Impact is eager to kick off this year's Upbeat Americana Summer Concert Series at home. 

"It's always good to come back home of course, but the experience of being deployed and playing for the troops is one of those experiences that is fulfilling on so many levels. To have the ability to represent the excellence of our deployed Airmen is unquestionably the most rewarding part of this job. With that being said, it's also fun and fulfilling to play for the general public back here in the United States and see the gratitude and patriotism that is displayed towards this country and the military," shared guitarist Senior Master Sgt. Matt Ascione, who has deployed five times. 

The beginning of this concert series also marks a new cycle for the band, as the band welcomes its new drummer, Technical Sgt. Gabe Staznik, to his very first summer of performing with the group. As the newest member of the team, Sgt. Staznik reveals, "I am looking forward to finally performing a full summer concert series with Max Impact. Last summer, while Max Impact was deployed, I provided musical support for funerals at Arlington National Cemetery with the Ceremonial Brass. This summer, I am most looking forward to performing at new venues and getting to know the people in our local communities." 

Concurrent with Technical Sgt. Staznik's arrival, long time veteran and bassist Master Sgt. Dave Foster will spend his final summer with Max Impact, after twenty-three years of honorable service to the Air Force band program. 

"My last summer with Max Impact is bittersweet. I will truly miss playing music with my compatriots, especially after all the success Max Impact has had with original music and videos. I'm looking forward to seeing what the next generation will accomplish with the incredible talent we've acquired in the last couple of years." 

From new members to different countries, Max Impact is evolving and shaping into their own diverse sound. Musical director and keyboardist Master Sgt. Jonathan McPherson says, "Whenever you go to a Max Impact concert, you're going to hear a variety of music performed. This summer we're including some popular 80's tunes that we performed on our last deployment. Some of these songs just seem to be timeless, being passed from one generation to the next. Of course, it wouldn't be a Max Impact show unless we performed an original and left you feeling a sense of pride to live in the U.S.A. At the end of the day that is our number one goal." 

Catch Max Impact at a variety of historical venues in the capital region this sunny season, embodying the mission of The United States Air Force Band. A special feature concert will take place at the Air Force Memorial on August 4, 2017, where the band will celebrate the heritage, innovation and partnership fostered by the U.S. Air Force in a special tribute entitled Heritage to Horizons: Portraits of Courage. Superintendent and vocalist Senior Master Sgt. Ryan Carson explains, "Summer concerts go hand in hand with our mission to honor our veterans, inspire patriotism and impact the globe. Every summer show we recognize our veterans and salute them for their service, incorporating patriotic messaging and music to reinvigorate and inspire patriotism." 

"We strive to constantly innovate, evolve and create performances and products that remain on the cutting edge of the performance industry. Each person on our team provides their own touch on our products and the Air Force story," he added. 

As D.C.'s musical ambassadors of the Air Force, Max Impact will continue to share the Air Force story with more original products and powerful live performances. All shows are free and open to the public with no tickets required. For a full list of concerts visit http://www.usafband.af.mil/eventscalendar/index.asp or follow them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/usafmaximpact/. All you need is a willingness to have fun and perhaps a lawn chair for this year's Upbeat Americana Summer Concert Series with your United States Air Force Premier Rock Band, Max Impact.

http://www.usafband.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123476569&source=Gov

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT!  

So a lot of you have been asking me when I will be releasing new music. As many of you know my job in the Air Force comes first followed by school, thus keeping me very occupied! However, I am SUPER EXCITED to tell you that every Wednesday in July, I will be releasing a new cover song just for you. I chose Wednesday to break up the monotony of the week especially for those of us who are still working over the summer. I cannot wait for you to hear them! Stay tuned for July 5th. Woohoo!! 

Cheers, 

NQ

"Meet the Newest Member of Max Impact" 

by Master Sgt. Dave Foster 

5/29/2015 - Washington, D.C. -- Magic. Ka. Fate. Synchronicity. 

Call it what you will, but every once and a while, the stars align and create the perfect scenario for special events to transpire. Some of that magic happened last fall when Max Impact lost long-time singer extraordinaire, Master Sgt. Shani Prewitt, to retirement, and began auditioning vocalists to fill her shoes. That's when nineteen-year-old Nalani Quintello showed up and stunned the audition committee, walking away as the new female vocalist for Max Impact. But, there's more to the story. At the time, she was a contestant on the popular hit television show, "American Idol," where she was sure to go to Hollywood and perform for Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick Jr. and Keith Urban. However, before completing the competition, Quintello announced her withdrawal from the show and her decision to become, instead, an American Airman. 

Born in Germany, Quintello's family moved to Florida when she was eight. During her youth, she developed a love for singing, performing at school and church. When she turned fourteen, she started performing at nursing homes, festivals and talent shows. "That's when I realized that I wanted to be a musician, because I saw the way that the residents would react at the nursing home ... they just appreciated music so much," she said. "I wanted to be able to do that on a much bigger level as a part of something more than just me." 

Quintello is no stranger to military service, so the decision to raise her right hand was not a difficult one. "I come from a military family. My dad was in the Army, and my sister is currently serving in the Air Force. So, I've always wanted to experience what it's like to serve." 

After winning the audition, Quintello spent the next eight weeks in San Antonio learning what being an Airman is all about. "My favorite parts of basic training were shooting the M16 rifle and going to church every Sunday. I learned a lot about myself at basic training. When you are put into high stress situations, you really start appreciating the little things like taking your time on a meal and getting a good night's sleep." Although Quintello loved basic training (even earning the nickname "the shovel" due to her eating habits), she was glad to finally get settled in Washington, D.C. She hit the ground running and hasn't slowed down yet. 

Quintello has only been in the Air Force now for four months, but she's already turning heads and making great strides. She's the youngest technical sergeant in the Air Force but brings a wealth of musical experience to The U.S. Air Force Band. Recently, she performed at the 2015 Air Force Charity Ball in front of the chief of staff of the Air Force and the secretary of the Air Force, receiving rave reviews from both. 

What does Quintello enjoy the most about being in Max Impact? "We get to use music as a therapeutic tool to help our fellow Airmen, who face challenges and struggles every day in their work to keep us free. Also, I get to work with such professional and amazing musicians--plus, it's like I suddenly have five older brothers. I've only ever had an older sister, so to have five new "brothers" is just absolutely amazing. Everyone is so professional in their own way. Everyone brings something very unique to the table, and I'm so blessed and honored to be able to work with a group like Max Impact." 

When asked about her personal goals she said, "Some of things that I'm looking for in the future is to keep giving back to the community and to be a good role model for kids my age out there and to just have fun, living life and positively representing the Air Force." 

Coincidence, then, that newly minted Technical Sgt. Nalani Quintello, a perfect match for Max Impact, just happened to come along at the perfect time, turning her back on a chance at fame and fortune for a chance to serve her country? Maybe the stars did align, maybe fate stepped in. But when you hear her perform under the stars on a warm summer night, you'll have only one word for it--magic. 

 

Take a Look Inside Nalani's World

Join my mailing list for the latest news

*This site is not affiliated with or endorsed by the US Air Force.