Army 420C Bandmaster Warrant Officer

Today, I want to educate you about the Army 420C Warrant Officer, the Bandmaster.  For someone who loves music and leadership, and has the desire to serve in the military, I can’t think of a better duty assignment or career field.  What I will do in the paragraphs below is talk about the duties, responsibilities, job description, career opportunities, and pre-requisites of the Army Bandmaster.

Duties, Responsibilities and Job Description

  • Serve as OIC or commander of band personnel
  • Account for property and equipment
  • Establish policies and procedures concerning band personnel
  • Provide command and control of bands
  • Advise higher commands on band issues, strengths and capabilities
  • Serve as subject matter experts pertaining to music
  • Supervise band personnel
  • Prepare budgets
  • Determine size of band needed for each mission
  • Handle budget and TDY issues for band members
  • Handle UCMJ and discipline issues with band members

Career Opportunities

Serving as a 420C Bandmaster offers plenty of career opportunities both inside and outside of the Army.  You have the opportunity to work your way up to the rank of CW5.  You could serve as a Bandmaster all the way up to the Army level.  You could serve as an instructor, trainer, advisor or Officer in Charge.  You could serve in a leadership role or in a staff position.

After your time in the Army is up, you could transition to the civilian world.  You could work in an orchestra, be a band teacher, work in a music studio, work for a music company, sell instruments, start your own band, or do countless other things.

Prerequisites to Become a Band Master

Here are the prerequisites I found online about becoming a band master.

  • SGT (P) or above serving in MOS 42R
  • A graduate of the Advanced Leaders Course (ALC)
  • Five years experience in an Army Band in PMOS 42R
  • Demonstrated potential for successful performance under minimal supervision as a musical ensemble leader, and experience working in Band Administration, Security, Operations, Supply, or other additional duties
  • An Army Musician Proficiency Assessment (AMPA) score from the Army School of Music of 30 or higher
  • Strong leadership potential and communication skills
  • Applicants must submit a video that shows them conducting a concert band that demonstrates their ability to lead Army Bands

Skills to Succeed in this Job

  • A passion for music
  • Experience with instruments and music
  • Good people skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Good organization skills
  • Play under the direction of a conductor
  • Know how to conduct music
  • Discipline
  • A good memory

Final Thoughts 

In summary, the Army 420C Bandmaster is an awesome job for the right person.  If you have musical ability, like leading people and want to serve in the Army, this would be a great fit for you.

What are your thoughts?  If you have any experience as an Army Bandmaster I would love to hear from you.  Please leave a comment below to tell us about what you disliked and liked about the job, what your experience was like and any tips you would recommend for someone considering this career field.

chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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4 thoughts on “Army 420C Bandmaster Warrant Officer”

  1. This really is a great MOS for someone who has musical talent. I have had friends who served in the band – though not as leaders – and they had the opportunity to experience some very high-profile ceremonies and events throughout their careers. For someone with the talent and the other prerequisites, this would be a dream job.

  2. Personally, this would never be the job for me. I love music, but just listening and not participating. There are many others who would be great at a position such as this. I believe the after Army job possibilities by having this MOS would be numerous. I know that many universities are always looking for band teachers and such. Thank you for enlightening us to this job.

      1. Full disclosure – I’m with you guys. Although I have had friends with musical talent, sadly, I don’t have the same gifts. That said, there’s no kind of music I love more than patriotic music and marching tunes. The band goes a long way toward boosting morale. The songs remain in our hearts long after the concert has ended.

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