4Troops: Musical group comprised of veterans to perform

Victor Hurtado: Courtesy photo Clockwise from left, 4Troops band members Meredith Melcher, Tony Genpilo, Joey Beebe and Ron Henry will be performing in Clovis at 7 p.m. Saturday at Marshall Middle School Auditorium. The band, made up of four veterans, has achieved national fame and tours all over the U.S., playing for veterans, military members and civilians.

Alisa Boswell

The Clovis Community College Cultural Art Series will be honoring Cannon Air Force Base military personnel Saturday with its 4Troops show, which will be held 7 p.m. at Marshall Middle School auditorium in Clovis.

Cultural Arts Director Christy Mendoza said general admission tickets are $17 while tickets for military members are $12 with a special deal of five tickets for $40 for military.

“I’ve been trying to get the 4Troops for a couple of years now, but they were so popular that it was hard to book them,” Mendoza said. “I saw them on a couple of morning shows and I thought, ‘Gosh, this would be so great with us having Cannon here and it would appeal to all types.’”

4Troops is a band made up of four military veterans, Meredith Melcher, Tony Genpilo, Joey Beebe and Ron Henry, who perform a variety of songs and sounds for military members and civilians.

Mendoza said she has been trying to get the band in Clovis for a few years but has been unable due to their schedule. She said after a two to three month negotiation process, she finally made it happen.

“They’re really looking forward to it. I’m a veteran as well and we’ve all talked about coming to communities that aren’t N.Y. and places like that,” said band manager Victor Hurtado said of the band. “We really want to reach out to smaller, family-oriented communities, because we really do like the sense of family. The group has a sense of family and the military has a sense of family.”

Hurtado said the band is not just about playing for military service members and veterans but they are also trying to bring the military to civilians.

“It’s really just carrying the torch for service members and veterans and representing them. They’ve done OK as far as getting the message out,” Hurtado said. “One week, we’re playing in a place like Beaumont, Calif., or Clovis then the next, we’re in a stadium seating 15,000.”

Hurtado said he and band members always plan among themselves what locations they will play in when off tour.

“I think it will be a great show for the entire family,” Mendoza said. “I think they do down home comfort songs that we all love. We’re dedicating it to all of our fighting men and women. It’s our way of saying thank you.”

Mendoza said the U.S. Army band, the Jazz Embassadors, will also be coming to the Cultural Art Series in April.

She said tickets for the 4Troops show can be found on base, at the community college and at the Clovis chamber of commerce.

“They’re great entertainers and it will be a night that you’ll remember for awhile,” Mendoza said. “Just come out and say thank you to them and all of Cannon Air Force Base.”