Songs From the Sea
Behind the Music of Emay Holmes
Deep below the cold steel decks of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68), Sailors moving busily around the decks stop momentarily and listen to the soft strumming of an acoustic guitar, accompanied by a somber voice singing about life at sea.
Airman Maxwell Holmes spends most of his very long days underway in the intense heat and chaos of the flight deck - moving carefully and quickly around aircraft and flight deck personnel. The high speed and intensity of his day-to-day life makes taking time to play his guitar not so much a want, said Holmes, but a need.
"I never really thought I was that good at playing or singing," said Holmes. "I thought my friends on the ship were just telling me that because they were my friends."
Although he considers himself shy, Holmes decided to sign up to sing and play guitar during deployment during the "Nimitz Idol" talent competition - and ended up winning 1st place.