I'm a longtime admirer of the Auburn University Marching Band. My wife was a section leader in the Band in the late 90s. Her first game was 1996 LSU where she SAW IT BURN from the student section. We have several AUMB albums from the 90s and today that provide a gameday soundtrack.
As much as I love the Band, there are some songs I'd love for them to play (during timeouts instead of piped in music or commercials from Mothratron). Here's ten (and then some) that came to mind recently. Please note that most of these are meant as stand music rather than music for marching.
1. Louie Louie
The AUMB has a long tradition so there naturally are some songs they used to play that have fallen out of the rotation. My favorite lost Band classic was Louie Louie by The Kingsmen. Here's an AUMB recording from 1994:
This was the Auburn Band's version of the Rammer Jammer. It wasn't played until the game was out of reach. It made the stands feel like Animal House. I think it fell out of the rotation due to an urban legend that if the Band so much as rehearsed the song, Auburn would lose the next game.
2. Auburn Victory March
This song served as Auburn's fight song before being replaced by War Eagle in 1955. The only time the Auburn Band played it in my lifetime was during the Band's centennial celebration in 1997.
Let's be clear, I am NOT calling for it to replace War Eagle as the fight song. War Eagle is a far superior tune but this song should have a place in pregame or halftime. It's fun and easy to shake a shaker to.
3. Heart of Oak
I'm a sucker for the old tunes and military marches. The next few songs on the list are some old songs that could be adapted to the AUMB's style.
The official march of the Royal Navy is Heart of Oak. It's a tune that dates to the French and Indian War. It's always been a personal favorite of mine and has very Auburn lyrics "we'll conquer again and again!" Here is a traditional marching band arrangement:
But here's my personal favorite, upbeat arrangement from Disney's Blackbeard's Ghost:
Honorable mention in the military march category would be Men of Harlech.
4. In the Hall of the Mountain King by Edvard Grieg
Auburn's band used to do good classical music blasts from Verdi's Requiem and Night on Bald Mountain back in the Tuberville and Chizik eras. Some of the most powerful music comes from the classical and operatic genre. It's time for the Band in the Loveliest City on the Plains to play In the Hall of the Mountain King:
I'm looking for the part starting around 1:41.
As an honorable mention in the classical and opera category, I'd love to hear the Auburn Band play the song If You Want a Receipt from Gilbert & Sullivan's operetta
5. Guide Me O, Thou Great Redeemer
In 2004, Auburn's team rallied around the spiritual song, Hard Fightin' Soldier on the way to a magical season. They incorporated the song into their field entrance where the players would link arms and march on the field slowly. That is still my favorite team entrance of all time. If the AUMB was looking to add another song from the hymnal, they could go with Guide Me O, Thou Great Redeemer/Jehovah to the Welsh tune, Cwm Rhondda. This may seem like a strange choice if you haven't seen the song being sung at sporting events in Wales.
Somehow it works.
6. Land of a Million Drums by Outkast
This entry was almost called "Anything by Outkast." Big Boi's daughter goes to Auburn so it's only right that the AUMB plays something by the Dirty South's best rap tandem. It's hard to choose just one Outkast song. The obvious one would be Hey Ya which is fun and upbeat. Instead (and in part because that was Andre 3000's song and Andre doesn't have a child at Auburn that I know of), I went with Land of a Million Drums. I think that the intro, chorus, and the part from the Andre bridge from around 3:00 to the end would sound awesome being played by a college marching band.
7. A Little Less Conversation and a Little More Action by Elvis
Again, there are so many Elvis songs that feel custom made for a marching band but maybe none more so than A Little Less Conversation and a Little More Action.
This song would fit perfectly during those long official reviews.
8. Family Tradition by Hank, Jr.
Auburn, for better or worse, has always been known as the Auburn Family. The song about family I most associate with my time at Auburn is Family Tradition. t was played at almost every fraternity party, house party, and bar I ever went to (along with David Allan Coe's You Don't Have to Call Me Darlin', Darlin).
This fits almost too well not to play.
9. Keep a Knockin' by Little Richard
How about a song for the TV timeouts following Auburn defensive stops in the redzone? Little Richard has you covered.
10. The Distance by Cake
Perfect song for the Malzahn era at Auburn. He's going the distance. He's going for speed. Strong bass line and high part harmonies would make this a very interesting sounding song in the stands.
Heck, I love music and I love the Auburn University Marching Band so this article could go on so much longer but it has to stop somewhere. Tell me what I missed. What would you like to hear the Band play?
For more on our love of the Band So Good It Has No Name here on the site, check out this piece from last summer.