The Bands

Hampton University

Hampton Pirates


There is no doubt why The Force is known as “The Best Beat in the East.” The young musicians that are part of this elite group are incredibly talented. They are dedicated to excellence and practice diligently to make “The Force” the premiere band and the pride of the Hampton University family. Under the direction of Mr. Rasán M. Holmes, The Force consists of approximately 215 members.

The Force has been seen on local and national television and was the only collegiate marching band in the Commonwealth of Virginia to be selected to perform for the 2008 Inaugural Parade for President Barrack Obama. The Force has performed in virtually every major football stadium on the East Coast, including performance for several NFL teams: the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Philadelphia Eagles, the Washington Redskins, and the New York Jets.

Hampton University's Band

Morgan State University

Hampton Pirates


The Morgan State University Marching Band has had many distinguished directors that have promoted high standards of musicianship through performance. The standard has been maintained and augmented under the present director, Melvin N. Miles. The band program has grown through the years and has received many awards and honors as they have performed for various clubs, organizations and diverse audiences.

In addition to the Magnificent Marching Machine, MSU offers the Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Quartet and the Bear (Pep Band). MSU's students have performed in many of the nation's All-American bands such as the U.S. Olympic Band, The All-America Liberty Band, The President's Inaugural Band and the National Intercollegiate Symphonic and Concert Bands.

Morgan State's Band