California Army National Guard
The proud history of the 40th Infantry Division Band began with the organization of the 7th Infantry Battalion, California National Guard Band in 1886 in Los Angeles, California. The Band has been redesignated a number of times:
- in 1940 as the 160th Infantry Band
- in 1943 as the 40th Infantry Division Band
- in 1954 as the 40th Armored Division Band
- in 1968 as the 240th Army Band
- in 1974 as the 40th Infantry Division (Mech) Band, a detachment of the 40th Adjutant General Company.
The 40th Infantry Division (M) Band became a separate unit with the reorganization of the division on 1 August 1985. Service to the country is exemplified in the 40th Division Band's record of Federal service. The Band has experienced four federal activations in its history, including Mexican Border Service n 1916, World War I in 1917, World War II in 1941 (Bismarck Archipelago, Luzon and the Southern Philippines), and Korean Conflict in 1950.
Among the unit's military decorations are the Meritorious Unit Citation for service in Korea, the Korean Presidential Unit Citation and the Philippine Presidential Unit Citation.
The 40th Division Band has performed before Presidents, Governors and numerous celebrities in the community. In addition to the duties of aiding the morale and esprit de corps of the California National Guard, the 40th Division Band actively participates in community programs and in concert with music groups and bands of other branches of the Armed Forces. These programs, including concerts and parades, identify graphically the fact that the 40th Division Band is community oriented and represents the true nature of the National Guard, as citizen soldiers.
The 40th Infantry (M) Division is headquartered in Los Alamitos, California. The 40th's subordinate units are stationed around the Southern California area, as well as Northern California, Arizona, Nevada, Montana and Colorado. The Sunburst Division is represented by the 40th Infantry (M) Division Band. The band is proud to represent one of the best Divisions in the Army, and the men and women who serve in it.
Army Bands have been playing ever since the Revolutionary War. Throughout our long history, thousands of musicians/soldiers have played in just about every setting at home and abroad, in battle and during peace. So whether we are entertaining the soldiers in the field, or our loved ones back home, Army musicians are always ready to do the job.
Army Bands do more than just march in parades, we do much more. We play music of all kinds, from big band, jazz, country, and rock to classical and concert pieces. We have played with some of America's most beloved entertainers, from Bob Hope and Marilyn Monroe, to Jay Leno and Vanessa Williams. Army bands are always on the move. Sometimes playing for a military ceremony in the morning, a concert in the park in the afternoon and a dance later in the evening. So if you are a highly motivated individual, and can play a musical instrument, check out the 40th Infantry Division (M) Band, the "Voice of California."