16th Annual Honda Battle of the Bands Celebrates HBCU Culture and Marching Band Tradition

A crowd of 62,000 fans, students and alumni took part in the 16th annual Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase (HBOB) on Saturday, where they enjoyed spectacular performances by eight of the nation’s top Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) marching bands and GRAMMY Award-winning R&B group 112. This year’s HBOB theme, “March On. Dream Together,” highlighted the distinctive culture of HBCU with a musical extravaganza of unparalleled musicianship, pageantry and camaraderie.

The show opened with a captivating musical salute to the U.S. military. All eight bands—more than 2,000 musicians and dancers in total—joined together on the field to honor all those who serve. Additional HBOB highlights included an energetic drum major tribute to the city of Atlanta, new music from 112’s latest album “Q Mike Slim Daron” and a show-stopping routine by the ever-popular Alabama State University Honey Beez.

This year’s Honda Battle of the Bands Invitational Showcase participants included:
• Alabama A&M University, Marching Maroon & White Band (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – fifth appearance
•Alabama State University, Mighty Marching Hornets (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – sixth appearance
•Bethune-Cookman University, Marching Wildcats (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – 13th appearance
•Hampton University, The Marching Force (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – first appearance
•Miles College, Purple Marching Machine (Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference) – first appearance
•North Carolina A&T State University, Blue & Gold Marching Machine (Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference) – sixth appearance
•Prairie View A&M University, Marching Storm (Southwestern Athletic Conference) – eighth appearance
•Tennessee State University, Aristocrat of Bands (Ohio Valley Athletic Conference) – eighth appearance

The Invitational Showcase presented these marching bands with a national platform to display their talent, both live and streamed online. Each of the participating universities received grants to help support their music education programs.

Honda has been committed to supporting the success and dreams of the nation’s HBCUs. Through initiatives like the Honda Battle of the Bands and Honda Campus All-Star Challenge Honda has been able to touch the lives of more than 120,000 students and award $12 million in grants in support of education programs.

Honda now gears up for Honda Campus All-Star Challenge (HCASC), a unique academic tournament for HBCU students that showcases and recognizes their academic talents. The 2018 champion will be crowned at the National Championship Tournament in April. Visit www.hcasc.com for more details.

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