Remember when the video above was on People.com? I do. I loved it. Even though I went to the University of Richmond, I love the Peppas. They do a killer job, whether they’re serenading NASCAR fans in the rain or ratcheting up the excitement at the Siegel Center, and the added touch of pumping Miley Cyrus’ voice in through the PA before blasting the chorus one more time is just outstanding. I get goosebumps when I watch that video — I really do.
Don’t get me wrong — I enjoy Richmond’s pep band. Just this past season, I had the chance to take my mom to her very first live basketball game, and I made sure to brag about how our pep band’s director is David Hood from No BS! Brass Band. I even pointed him out, like you would a local celebrity or athlete who is poised become a big deal out of town as well. Plus, the recent Robins Center renovations have them repositioned in the center of the student section (they used to be tucked away in a corner at court level) — an improvement that vastly increases the band’s atmospheric influence. Will that result in a “Wrecking Ball”-type video in the future? With Hood at the helm, I wouldn’t rule it out.
So why am I talking about pep bands? A couple days ago, UR’s athletics department sent me a survey asking about the experience I had at the games I attended last season, and while I was most excited to complain about the food, everything changed when I got to this question:
They didn’t ask for a blog post, but they’re gonna get one.
Did everyone have a great Thanksgiving? Get enough gravy? Watch enough football? I managed to catch chunks of all 3 of Thursday’s games, but there was one thing I was determined not to miss: Nickelback’s appearance during halftime of the Lions/Packers game in Detroit. I was fascinated by the hullabaloo leading up to their performance — I can’t remember the last time mean-spirited-ness was so widely tolerated (especially of the musican-on-musician variety). Hating on Nickelback is fun and all, but the campaign to have them replaced seemed bizarre in its fervor, and I was curious to see how they would handle the adversity. The event itself was relatively uneventful, in a way that these performances must be in a post-Nipplegate world, but two things stuck out… 1. The lead singer got a long-overdue haircut, and 2. There was a drumline. Hmmm… Now, marching bands and football go together like Forrest and Jenny, but this seemed like an odd choice, given how little the corps was utilized and how little you could actually hear it. See what you think…
Still with me? What a trouper you are. Seemed kinda off, right? Well the drumline issue jumped right back to the front of my mind when Enrique Iglesias took the stage just a few hours later during halftime of the Cowboys/Dolphins game. Why? Because Mr. Iglesias, owner of the world’s tightest hoodie, was flanked not only by rapper and co-founder of Bad Boy Records subsidiary Bad Boy Latino, Pitbull (he knows you want him), but also by a sizable group of marching drummers. Have a look…
Seriously, if you’re still reading, you get a gold star for wading through this crap with me. Speaking of crap, if you’ve ever read a glossy gossip magazine, you may already be familiar with the commonplace feature where they place pictures of two celebrities wearing a similar outfit side-by-side and ask the question (we’ll go with US Weekly’s wording here), “Who wore it best?” So what do you think? Who wore the drumline best, Nickelback or Enrique? Feel free to comment below, or just click here to get both out of your head as soon as humanly possible by watching the University of Southern California’s marching band back up Radiohead in their performance of “15 Step” at the 2009 Grammys.