After a one-year hiatus, the Cracker Barrel National Battle of The Bands (formerly the Queen City Battle of the Bands), brought together eight of the most renowned HBCU marching bands to see who stands the tallest.
One of the eight at Sunday’s show in Houston was Florida A&M University's Marching '100'. The event is an unofficial start to the fall band season, and also raises money for the programs that participate.
The show consisted of halftime drills as well as music from the stands. The Battle of the Bands was held at the NRG Stadium in Houston.
This is the first time since 2011 that the Marching '100' has participated in a Battle of the Bands. The band came back on to the battle scene with great energy to start its fall season. Their drill was a tribute to the Beyoncé Homecoming album. Some of the songs performed were “Lose My Breath” and “Before I Let Go” from the album and “Bills, Bills, Bills” by Destiny's Child.
For junior music education major Keondre Pascal, this was a homecoming of his own. This was Pascal’s first time performing in the band since his freshman year during the fall of 2017. Pascal felt at home during practice with his bandmates preparing for the Battle of the Bands.
“I didn’t march my sophomore year but I missed it so much. It feels great to be back with the band and getting amazing opportunities like this to perform with people who have the same passion for music as me,” Pascal said.
Pascal is not the only one optimistic about the Marching '100'’s upcoming season. After watching the Battle of the Bands, 2006 FAMU alumnus Christopher Davis tweeted, “The Marching '100' wow! Came with such explosive sound! I was truly proud! Great show indeed! Can’t wait to see what the season holds!”
Lea Davis, a junior at Spelman College in Atlanta, went to the event to see if the Marching '100' lived up to the hype.
“One of my best friends goes to FAMU and she is always talking about how lit their band is. We thought it would be cool to go to Houston this weekend to see them perform, and honestly their halftime performance was my favorite of the whole night,” Davis said.
Videos of the Marching '100’'s performance can be found on HBCUsports.com, where there is also a poll for who performed the best at the exhibition.