Six HBCU Marching Bands Selected to Perform in 2023 Honda Battle of the Bands

Six HBCU Marching Bands Selected to Perform in 2023 Honda Battle of the Bands

Nation’s premier marching band showcase to be held for first time on an HBCU campus at Alabama State University

Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB) returns LIVE on February 18, 2023; tickets now on sale at

HBOB 2023 host Rickey Smiley reveals the band lineup:

TORRANCE, Calif., Nov. 30, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The votes are in and six marching bands have been selected to perform at the 2023 Honda Battle of the Bands (HBOB), the nation’s premier showcase for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) marching bands and dance teams. HBOB marks its 18th year as one of the largest celebrations of Black culture and musical excellence, returning to a live event format and also livestreamed on February 18, 2023.

The 2023 HBOB Invitational Showcase will take place at Alabama State University in Montgomery, Ala., bringing the music and excitement to an HBCU campus for the first time with high-energy performances from the following six bands:

Alabama State University Mighty Marching Hornets – 7th appearance
Langston University Marching Pride – 4th appearance
Morgan State University Magnificent Marching Machine – 1st appearance
Savannah State University Powerhouse of the South – 7th appearance
Texas Southern University Ocean of Soul – 3rd appearance
Virginia State University Trojan Explosion – 10th appearance
Each HBCU school represented by the six bands will receive an institutional grant from Honda to support their music education programs, as well as an all-expenses-paid trip to the Invitational Showcase.

Honda invited all HBCU marching bands to participate in the 2022-2023 HBOB program. After fans nationwide cast more than 100,000 online votes, the final six bands were selected through a voting process that included HBOB fans, HBCU band directors and students, and Honda representatives. The four bands with the most votes automatically secured their spots in the lineup, while the other two bands were selected by the HBOB committee.

“Congratulations to all of the finalists! Honda is excited to carry on the HBOB tradition of bringing together students, alumni and fans to recognize the talents of these spectacular marching bands and dance teams,” said Yvette Hunsicker, vice president of Corporate Social Responsibility and Inclusion & Diversity at American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “For over 30 years Honda has supported HBCUs in their unique and critical role of providing higher education and opportunities for advancement to the Black community, so hosting HBOB on an HBCU campus for the first time feels like coming home.”

“We are very excited to host the 2023 Honda Battle of the Bands Showcase and provide a buzzing atmosphere of HBCU pride and culture on Alabama State University’s campus,” said ASU President Dr. Quinton T. Ross, Jr.

Celebrity Hosts Rickey Smiley and Loni Love

Rickey Smiley, legendary comedian, author, television host, award-winning radio host and Alabama State University alum, will serve as the host for the 2023 HBOB live event. Loni Love, the Emmy and two-time NAACP Image Award-winning host, comedian, actress, author and Prairie View A&M University alumna, will host the livestream.

“It is an honor to host the iconic Honda Battle of the Bands event, which has a long history of inspiring and energizing fans of music and Black culture across the country,” said Smiley. “HBOB is a one-of-a-kind experience for these talented student musicians and will be an unforgettable day for everyone.”

Ticket & Event Information

Tickets for the HBOB Invitational Showcase are on sale at

Fans can join the conversation using #HBOB and follow along as the final six bands’ journey commences to the Invitational Showcase on official HBOB social media channels:

Facebook –
Instagram – @the_honda /
Twitter – @The_Honda /
Honda and Historically Black Colleges and Universities

For over 30 years, Honda has supported the success and dreams of Historically Black College and University (HBCU) students through initiatives including the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge and Honda Battle of the Bands. These programs provide unforgettable experiences and opportunities for HBCU students, including meeting and networking with peers from other HBCU schools. Honda has impacted the lives of more than 200,000 students and awarded over $14 million in grants in support of HBCU education programs and facilities improvements.

To advance its leading investment in HBCUs, Honda is a member of the HBCU Partnership Challenge, a Congressional Bipartisan HBCU Caucus initiative that brings together government, industry and HBCUs to create strategic, more sustainable HBCU partnerships. Honda also has partnered with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund to provide annual scholarship funding to support HBCU students pursuing an education in engineering, supply chain management and manufacturing-related fields.

About Honda Corporate Social Responsibility

For more than 60 years in the U.S., Honda has been committed to making positive contributions to the communities where its customers and associates live and work. Honda’s mission is to create products and services that improve lives while conducting business in a sustainable manner and fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace. Advancing its corporate social responsibility, Honda and the Honda USA Foundation support this direction through giving focused on education, the environment, mobility, traffic safety and community.

Learn more at

SOURCE – Honda

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