Hawkeye, ISU marching bands among Top 5 in Metallica contest

The University of Iowa Hawkeye Marching Band (bottom) performs with the Hawkeye Metal Band (top) in a September 2023 halftime performance of Metallica's music at Kinnick Stadium. (Screenshot of video from University of Iowa.)


By Amie Rivers

December 13, 2023

Grammy-winning, Hall-of-Fame thrash metal rockers Metallica are making marching band competitions cool for a whole new crowd.

In April, the band announced a marching band competition, “For Whom the Band Tolls,” offering instruments and equipment music programs at high schools and colleges that play their music the best (the band also provided their extensive sheet music catalog for free).

And among all the college marching bands to enter, BOTH the Iowa State University Marching Band, and the University of Iowa’s Hawkeye Marching Band (with an assist from the Hawkeye Metal Band), are Top 5 Finalists. That puts both programs in line for a cool $75,000 worth of equipment.

Watch ISUMB’s performance here, and HMB’s performance (with amazing videography to boot!) here.

Even if neither wins, there’s also a “fan favorite” category, where bands with the most votes win $10,000.

Vote by Dec. 31 by texting either #UIOWA or #UIOWASTATE to (833) 609-0330 (find out more here). Bad news: You can only vote for one.

  • Amie Rivers

    Amie Rivers is Starting Line's community editor, labor reporter and newsletter snarker-in-chief. Previously, she was an award-winning journalist at the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier; now, she very much enjoys making TikToks and memes. Send all story tips and pet photos to [email protected] and sign up for our newsletter here.



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