One day you’re playing trombone for Gladys Knight and teaching part-time at CSN, the next you’re starring in a National Geographic TV show about UFO sightings (you in this scenario being geoscientist/freelance trombonist Ben McGee).
When you were pitched Chasing UFOs, did you say yes right away?
Not immediately. If you want a career as a scientist, touching anything with UFO on it has ... implications, let’s say. But I’m a big believer in education outreach. And all the people who have questions about UFOs, they’re right to ask them. So ultimately, I said yes.
Does the show have a particular outlook, pro-UFO or skeptical?
National Geographic wants to promote the scientific look—I’m a skeptic—but they also want other perspectives. So the viewers get slices of all sides of the story.
- Chasing UFOs
- Premieres June 29, 9 p.m.
- National Geographic Channel
Have you come across anything that might have been a UFO?
I will say, in a couple instances, I was convinced that something happened. Was it necessarily aliens? No. But you can’t just wave these claims away. I believe there are questions that need to be explored before you can jump to the conclusion [that aliens haven’t visited Earth].
Sounds like you’re being diplomatic ...
They gave me a nickname on the show: Dream Crusher.