HBCU Bands and Hip-Hop Icons Shine at the National Battle of the Bands

Houston’s NRG Stadium transformed into a hub of musical energy and cultural celebration on August 26th as it played host to the highly anticipated National Battle of the Bands event. Showcasing the unparalleled talents of eight prestigious HBCU bands and featuring a star-studded lineup, the event was a true testament to the rich musical heritage and innovation within the HBCU community.

The NRG Stadium pulsated with rhythm and excitement as HBCU bands from around the nation took center stage, each displaying their unique musical flair and precision. The event featured an incredible lineup of HBCU bands including:

– Florida A&M University, The Marching “100”
– Langston University, “Marching Pride” Band
– Mississippi Valley State University, Mean Green Marching Machine
– Norfolk State University, The Spartan “Legion” Marching Band
– Southern University, Human Jukebox
– Tennessee State University, Aristocrat of Bands (the first HBCU to win a Grammy)
– Texas Southern University, “Ocean of Soul” Marching Band
– Virginia State University, Trojan Marching Explosion

The band battle was further elevated by a powerhouse of guest performances from legendary artists celebrating 50 years of hip-hop including:
– Doug E. Fresh
– Slim Thug
– Big Boi 
– Choppa
– Lil Keke
– Z-Ro
– DJ Mr. Rogers

The collaborative spirit of the event bridged generations and genres, fostering an electric atmosphere that resonated with the diverse audience.

Leading up to the main event, the National Battle of the Bands presented an array of community-driven activities that were free to attend. On Friday August 25th, the NBOTB’s Emerging Experience Entrepreneur Conference, sponsored by J.P. Morgan Chase, brought together innovative minds to discuss and inspire entrepreneurship within the community.

The festivities continued with The Back on the Yard Kickoff and Stroll Off Competition held at the Student Plaza of Texas Southern University. Attendees were treated to a display of Greek fraternity and sorority stepping, a high school band showcase, along with performances by community dance teams and drumlines. The Texas Southern Cheerleaders, Tiger Sensations, and the legendary “Ocean of Soul” Marching Band added an extra layer of excitement to the evening.

The National Battle of the Bands event not only celebrated music and performance but also served as a platform to promote HBCU unity, and cultural exchange. The event proved yet again that music has the power to bring people together, bridging generations of people with one commonality, a love for our beloved HBCU institutions.

Checkout some more of our photos from the event below

For video clips of the event, head to our Historically Black Since YouTube channel HERE 

Where the HBCU Culture Resides