The crowd went wild, as drum lines from both Grambling State University and Southern University stepped forward to rock the stadium.
“This is what everyone has been looking forward to, a nice smooth battle between both drum lines,” said Florida Franklin, a sophomore at Grambling.
As fans from all over the world crowded the Mercedes-Benz Superdome stadium in New Orleans, for one of the most anticipated events, the Battle of the Bands between Grambling under the direction of Dr. Larry J. Pannell and Southern University under the direction of Lawrence Jackson. The crowd was in for a major surprise, as rumors had been spread about the possibility of there being a battle between the two school’s drum lines; however, nothing was ever confirmed. This has not happened in a battle of the bands since 2008 when senior leaders from both universities, battled it in what was called a “miniature” drum line battle.
When talking to the Section leaders of both Grambling and Southern about their knowing of the possible battle Gregory Jones said, “I heard rumors from outside sources, but a battle was never confirmed to us until the day before.”
“We have been prepared to perform percussion features since band camp. We practiced all through the semester, and kept getting better as a section each week,” said Jones, a section leader of the World Famed Tiger Marching Band.
The blue and gold also heard about the possible battle.
“Yes, I did know about the drum line battle, but both drum lines didn’t want it, but we had no choice since they had already advertised about it,” said Damien Brown, Southern section leader.
“We practiced and did as best we could, I felt good about our performance. Both drum lines had mistakes but overall good,” said Brown.
During the infamous battle between World Famed and the Human Jukebox mistakes were defiantly made, sticks were dropped from members of each band, but only one was advertised, as a snare player from SU dropped his stick while on camera.
Both drum lines practiced and worked very hard to prepare and was evident to those in attendance.
“I feel as if Grambling’s drum line did an exceptional job at the performance and all the hard work and practice paid off,” said Robert Anderson, a former GSU snare player and Houston native.
“Southern’s drum line didn’t appear to be much of a challenge for my guys. They seem to lack innovation and creativity, Grambling always seem to give the people what they want.” Anderson added that In order to have a great team it takes a great leader.
“The drum line has improved since my last year in band. Seems like we have a good group of young guys that are willing to work hard, said Anderson.
Even with doubts, GSU pulled away with a win from the World Famed Chocolate Thunder Drum Line. The five judges who were randomly picked, alumni from both universities set forward to judge the remainder of the show as the two school’s portrayed their talents in a fierce battle, that would determine who’s best.
The Marching Tigers took a totally different approach than the Human Jukebox during the battle of bands, Grambling started off the battle losing the coin toss. Playing three songs such as “Poetic Justice” by Kendrick Lamar, “Emotions” by Destiny Child, and “Set if off” by Lil Boosie.
Southern’s Human Jukebox went second, first playing their theme song “Neck”, setting SU fans into a boisterous cheer, as they chanted, “SU, SU, GSU Who?”
Southern reigned supreme of the battle, because fans from both schools were jamming to the beat. Even the judges agreed they were the 2012 winners.