Music a calling for communications flight reservist

  • Published
  • By Stacy Vaughn
  • 445th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
If you attended the Tenth Annual Dayton Celtic Festival in July, you may have seen a familiar face on stage sporting a kilt. That's because Master Sgt. Timothy Back, 445th Communications Flight Chief of Information Systems, was performing with his band, Rocky Creek.

Rocky Creek is a four-piece band based in the greater Dayton, Ohio, area. Formed in 2002, the band has over the years expanded it's repertoire of music to include bluegrass, folk, Celtic, gospel, cowboy, holiday and some originals. A few of the instruments Back plays include the mandolin, pennywhistle, and harmonica, some of which he played during the festival.

"Playing at this venue is always fun for us. We played at the Fifth Annual Dayton Celtic Festival back in 2006 and this year was its tenth one. Dayton has so many amazing bands that want to play at the event that it's hard to fit them all in. I just hope we don't have to wait another five years to come back," Back said.

Back has been with the band since the beginning as one of its original members, along with Matthew Lintz (fiddle), Duane Lintz (rhythm guitar), and John Lay (congas, banjo, bass, lead guitar).

"We were all working for Gateway Computers as service technicians. The movie, "O Brother, Where Art Thou," came out with its American folk music soundtrack. We said, 'How cool is that,' and Matt said, 'I can play the fiddle,' and John said, 'I play the guitar.' Then I said, 'I play Autoharp and harmonica...we should have a band!'

After that we were trying to decide on a name, but every good one that we would think of was already taken. Then we hit on Rocky Creek and did an Internet search, and nobody had it. Now there are three bands that have that name," Back laughed.

Since its formation, Rocky Creek produced a CD in 2007 titled, "Our Celtic Beginnings." A second CD is in the works featuring all Gospel music and will include some original songs.

"A lot of people think all blue grass music sounds the same and I was one of them. I understand where they're coming from because my dad used to listen to it all the time. I used to say, 'Dad, how can you listen to that, it that all sounds the same.'" Back said. "But the more I heard of it the more unique each band sounded."

Back said they are not in it for the money but enjoy doing it for themselves and their love of music.

"We'd like to develop a good following of course, but we'll never be quitting our day jobs. It's a labor of love."

The sergeant also encourages those in the wing that have a passion for music to follow their dreams.

"If you have a desire to be a musician, by all means pursue your talent. It's one of the best hobbies I know of. Start as early as you can. Even if it doesn't make you rich and famous, it will give you and others pleasure your whole life through."