Operation Encore: Soldiers, Stories, and Songs

Operation Encore: Soldiers, Stories, and Songs

Listen to veteran and active-duty members of the armed forces highlight their original music and tell stories of their service, as they work to spread their message and their music, to new fans.Operation Encore is a non-profit veterans organization that provides opportunities for veteran and active duty singer-songwriters and musicians to take their music to the next level through artist development, professional recording, and industry-focused educational services. We seek out talent from across veteran communities to produce and highlight their original music, showcase their talents and advance their careers. Our podcast features powerful stories and original songs from our artists and artists across the veteran community.

Episodes

November 2, 2023 56 mins

In this episode of “Soldiers, Stories & Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi) spend time with retired Army helicopter pilot Kate Anderson and military spouse Secily Anderson.  Together, they blend compelling lyrics, smooth harmonies and tasty guitar leads as a duet called “Winter Grain”.  Learn about how Kate grew up around the Reno Rodeo, almost became a nun, then pivoted to 22 years of service in the Army, and how Secily gre...

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In this episode of “Soldiers, Stories and Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi) spend time with retired Army veteran and Green Beret Derek Stoner.  After spending a childhood hunting, fishing and working as a farm laborer in small town Craig, Missouri (population 200), Derek joined the National Guard while still in High School and served in the Army after September 11th.  Derek spent 20 years serving his country as an elite Green ...

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In this episode of “Soldiers, Stories and Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi) spend some time with Stephen Wayne talking about his humble roots in rural Arkansas and his year long “adventure” at age 14, sneaking on Greyhound buses, living on the streets and playing his old Fender Squire guitar.  Yes-Age 14!  Of course, he later met an Army recruiter and signed up as a mechanic a few months before 9/11.  He retired 21 years later...

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In this episode of "Soldiers, Stories, and Songs", Guy [Jaquier] and Adam [Rossi] catch up with Operation Encore artist Mike Ponder, a veteran of both the Navy and Marine Corps. Mike was introduced to music at an early age: He started touring at age three and was playing drums at age 6 on stage with his parents and their band "JL and the Country Squires".
Mike deployed in support of the Gulf War in 1991, Ko...

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In this episode of “Stories, Soldiers and Songs”, Guy [Jaquier] and Adam [Rossi] catch up with Operation Encore artist and Army veteran Schaefer Mueller after his recent OE recording session at AR Audio in San Francisco. During the podcast, they discuss Schaefer’s early music influences including his grandfather who played bass guitar for Funk and Jazz bands, and his parents who drove him to Jimmy Buffett concerts in a minivan deco...

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During this episode of “Stories, Soldiers and Songs”, Guy and Adam talk with USMC veteran Brandon Mills about growing up in Kentucky and his service as a Recon Marine and Scout Sniper during multiple combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.  Brandon also describes his  post-military life, which includes three years working with a non-profit in a Palestinian refugee camp, his appearance on the TV series “The Bachelor”, his work i...

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Meet JB Brown -- an up-and-coming  artist and Marine with a humble background and a smooth county-rock sound.  In this episode of “Stories, Soldiers and Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi)  discuss JB's journey from a young drummer at a county fair to the streets of Iraq and back again.  During the podcast, they discuss JB’s service in a Marine recon unit and his close encounter with a roadside bomb that led to his retireme...

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In this episode of “Stories, Soldiers and Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi) catch up with Operation Encore artist and Navy veteran Morgan Warneke in Nashville, TN. During the podcast, they discuss Morgan’s journey from a cross country runner in an Arkansas high school to his time as a Naval Academy cadet, his service as a Surface Warfare Office on a mine sweeper in the Persian Gulf, and finally to his adventures as a singer/so...

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In this episode of “Stories, Soldiers and Songs”, Guy (Jaquier) and Adam (Rossi) catch up with Operation Encore artist and Navy veteran Adam Gaffney while he is recording his new EP (!) at AR Audio in San Francisco. During the podcast, they discuss Adam’s humble Midwest roots his adventures while shopping at Walmart, his military service loading weapons as a Navy Aviation Ordnanceman on aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf (includ...

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January 1, 2022 41 mins

In this episode of "Stories, Soldiers and Songs", Guy and Adam interview a new 2021 addition to the  Operation Encore family, Scotty Hasting.  During the podcast, Scotty discusses his military service and the challenges of trying to become a household name in country music as a Nashville-based singer-songwriter.   He also describes his "really bad day" in Afghanistan when he was shot 10 times and reveals how he ...

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In this episode of the Operation Encore (OE) podcase, active-duty Army soldier Bob Deprato drops in the OE studio during his stateside leave and talks to Guy and Adam about his 18-year career in Special Operations.  Bob describes his deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan, his time in the Crisis Response Force providing security for overseas embassies, his efforts leading military support for overseas Presidential visits, and his exper...

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In this episode of the Operation Encore podcast, Marine Landing Support Specialist Barbara  Sim gives a fascinating, open and honest description of her time in her marines and her  singer-songwriting journey.  An upcoming country artist with a soaring voice, Barbara describes her time as part of the "Lioness Group" in Iraq, searching for dangerous contraband and explosives among the population  (Preview: finding a grenade...

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In this episode of the Operation Encore podcast, former Marine Combat Engineer Steve Harwood takes Guy and Adam on a journey of discovery, from a tumultuous youth to the battlefields of Fallujah.  Born in Woodenville, WA, Steve tells the story of how his father bought him a 45-day Greyhound bus ticket after high school and how that eventually led him to join the Marines and drive Humvees across Iraq.  After dodging incoming fire du...

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Army Combat Medic John Evans has a lot of stories to tell.  Born in Houston, TX and raised in upstate New York, John idolized his WW2-veteran grandfather and decided to enter the Army immediately following 911.  After hearing a slightly inaccurate portrayal of the "Health-Care Specialist" field from his local recruiter, John signed up and was trained as a combat-medic, then deployed multiple times in support of operation ...

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Meet Angel "Nolo" Santiago -- the kind of man who sets his mind to a task and overcomes all obstacles to make it happen.  A native of Puerto Rico , Angel had music in his life from a young age. He began playing a nylon-string guitar in grade school and steadily increased his skill through high school as he waited on weekly TV shows to pick up tips and tricks from the likes of Eddie Van Halen.  One day after college as he ...

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March 10, 2021 50 mins

Meet Mr. Lloyd Smith -- a doctor, surgeon, chemistry professor, student of California Gold Rush lore, California native, singer/songwriter, and one of the most generous men you'll ever meet. He's also a self-taught luthier who has built over 80 beautiful, custom guitars which he has given away as gifts -- some of which have made their way into the hands of our artists.  In partnership with Lloyd, Operation Encore is annou...

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You can't have a conversation with Tyree Woods without leaving with a smile on your face. The man with the infectious smile and positive attitude has had his share of trials and tribulations. During this episode of the OE podcast, Tyree describes growing up in Muskegon Heights, MI  as a biracial kid, and how foster care helped him forge the resiliency necessary to adapt to a Army life.  A veteran of two combat tours in Afghani...

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Meet Brian Boland - Half Redneck, Half Surfer, and all-American active-duty C-130 pilot.  During episode #16 of the OE  podcast, Brian tells about his adventures in the Coast Guard, from "Flying back from Gitmo yesterday", to conducting  iceberg reconnaissance, surfing while watchin 50 caliber machine guns, and conducting 11-ton cocaine drug busts.  In his off time from helping stabilize the geo-political scene off our na...

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In this episode of the OE podcast, Guy Jaquier and Adam Rossi interview Operation Encore Co-Founder Erik Brine. Erik describes the history of OE and how it grew from an idea between friends into a successful non-profit that serves over 25 veteran musicians and performs at events throughout the county. An Air Force Reserve pilot Colonel and former , Erik describes why he tells people he's been involved in multiple military affa...

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During this episode of Soldiers, Stories, and Songs, Dani Figueroa describes how 9/11 altered her life and led her from pursuing a professional soccer career to becoming a Heavy Vehicle Operator and a veteran of both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.   A  former member of both the Army Reserves and the Marine Corps, Dani describes returning home with significant combat injuries and PTSD  and how music sustaine...

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