Texas A&M University's
Fightin' Texas Aggie Band
Texas A&M University's Fightin' Texas Aggie Band marked its centennial year during 1994. It has grown from a mere 13 members in 1894 to more than 400 musicians today.
Key facts and figures about the group:
- With approximately 400 men and women musicians, it is the largest military marching band in the country.
- The musicians all are members of Texas A&M's Corps of Cadets. Band members live, eat and are housed together as a unit of the corps.
- The infantry and artillery bands, which form the combined band, are the two largest units in the Corps of Cadets.
- The band is led by members of its senior class, who wear distinctive senior boots.
- There are no music majors among the band's members because Texas A&M doesn't offer such a major.
- Band members pursue studies in all of the university's undergraduates colleges.
- Twelve senior cadets march on the band's front row as the "bugle rank."
- The group prepares its drills with seven to 10 hours of actual practice time per week. Members say that's possible only because of the discipline inherent in their military lifestyle.
- Some of the band's maneuvers are so complex that a computer says they can't be done because they require two people to be in the same place at the same time.
- The band performs at all of the university football games as well as in inaugural parades for presidents and governors and at numerous other university and special events.
The band is nationally known for its stirring renditions of patriotictunes and precision military marching style. Among its most popular numbers are "The Aggie War Hymn," the school's fight song; "The Spirit of Aggieland," its alma mater; "Noble Men o
f Kyle," the group's signature march; "The Ballad of the Green Berets;" and "Stars and
As a prelude to its centennial celebration, the band premiered three new marches during the fall 1993 football season written specifically for the group. A new recording (on CD or cassette) is now available entitled "Texas Aggie Band Centennial," feat
uring the band's traditional favorites and the new marches. The Texas A&M University Press has released a book on the history and traditions of the band.
The band is under the direction of Lt. Col. Ray E. Toler (Ret. USAF). Lt. Col. Jay O. Brewer (TSG) is associate director. Lt. Timothy B. Rhea is assistant director and Dorothy Hopkins is staff asssistant.
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