Holy Cross Goodtime Marching Band

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College of the Holy Cross Crusaders
School College of the Holy Cross
Location Worcester, Massachusetts
Conference Patriot League
Founded 1845
Members 40
Fight song "Chu Chu, Rah Rah"
Uniform Black overalls, Purple and White jacket with black cuffs and purple sequined sash, black shoes, black gloves, white plume, purple shako with silver brim and accent.
Website college.holycross.edu/studentorgs/band/

Formed in 1845, the Holy Cross Crusaders Marching Band (HCMB) is one of the oldest organizations at The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA.[1] The Crusaders Marching Band first began performing at football games in 1910 and the band's role has expanded significantly since to include other athletic appearances, performing at all home football games, selected away games, in exhibition at high school band competitions, and at various events throughout the country. In the spring, the marching band converts into the Holy Cross Crusader Pep Band and plays at all home basketball games, and travels with the teams to the NCAA tournament. The Marching Band performs at Fitton Field while the Pep Band plays in the Hart Center.


The band is made up of a cross-section of students who have immense school spirit and a strong camaraderie. Members study all majors and disciplines offered by the college and come from various marching and musical backgrounds. Members are accepted from schools in the Worcester Consortium, and members have in the past attended both Assumption College, and Worcester State College. Members are able to move into the college early in order to participate in this "Band Camp".

Marching Band[edit]

The Holy Cross Crusaders Marching Band in the familiar HC formation

During the fall, the Marching Band practices during the week (traditionally three times a week for an hour and a half each session) and performs at all home football games, select away games, in exhibition at high school band competitions, and at various events throughout the country. Performances responsibilities at sporting events include a pre-game show of traditional Holy Cross music, playing pop songs in the stands, a halftime field show, and a post-game concert.

When the Band is not entertaining crowds at sporting events, it keeps itself busy in other fashions. Traditionally, the Band travels to area nursing homes during the holiday season to play Christmas carols and visit with the residents. In the past, the Band has played at the annual Holy Cross Christmas tree lighting ceremony at O'Kane Hall. Other events have included the Relay for Disaster Relief, an open-air concert at Faneuil Hall in Boston, the Boston MS Walk, the Worcester St. Patrick's Day Parade, and Father McFarland's Birthday in Kimball. The Band has also performed internationally, including engagements in Ireland and Bermuda.

100th anniversary[edit]

The HCMB conducted a celebration of its first performance on Fitton Field which occurred in 1910 in October 2010. The celebration included a gathering for past band alumni and current band members to discuss memories and history of the Holy Cross Band Program.


During the 2010 season, the band was left without a director just before the beginning of the football season. A former band member and 2009 graduate, Matthew Cain, stepped in and served as interim director, organizing and conducting weekly rehearsals, coordinating non-athletic performances, and even arranging songs for the band to play at basketball games during pep season. During the season, the band looked to hire a permanent director, and appointed Nicholas J. McKenzie, a graduate of UMass Amherst and a professional in both band direction and drill coordination. McKenzie assumed his position at the end of the marching season in 2010 and, under his leadership, the band has unveiled new uniforms and a new field show. The band debuted the show and uniform at the first night game held at Holy Cross' Fitton Field, on 1 September 2011, a game against UMass. The band was well received by the crowd of almost 20,000 fans, alumni and students.


Music performed at games includes a wide variety of classic pep band songs, and some HCMB original arrangements. Favorite pep band songs include:

"Cuban Coffee", "Danger Zone", "Gimme Some Lovin'", "Hey! Baby", "An Irish Party in Third Class" (from the movie Titanic), "Land of a Thousand Dances", "Magic Carpet Ride", and "Sweet Caroline".

The band also plays the theme songs to several sports shows, including ESPN's SportsCenter, NFL on Fox, CBS's "Road to the Final Four."

The field show is the highlight of the Marching Band season. Field shows generally include three to five songs with a uniting theme.

2013: ""Goodtime", Massachusetts: The Bay State's Best Beats" "Foreplay/Longtime", "Peace of Mind", "More Than a Feeling", "Ragdoll", "Walk This Way", "Mama Kin", "Dude Looks Like a Lady", "Dream On", "Shipping Up to Boston", "Sweet Caroline"

Pep Band[edit]

During the spring semester, many marchers trade in their uniforms for striped purple-and-white rugby shirts and transform into the Holy Cross Crusader Pep Band. The band attends the men's and women's basketball games played at Holy Cross, as well as selected hockey games. The BC Eagles are the Crusaders' traditional athletic rivals while fellow Patriot League members including American University and Bucknell University are its modern rivals.[2] Recent NCAA trips include the 2007 competition in Columbus, Ohio, for the men's team and Raleigh, North Carolina, for the women's team. Past trips have included St. Louis, Missouri, Indianapolis, Indiana, and College Park, Maryland. The Goodtime Marching Band traveled to Dayton, Ohio and Spokane, Washington for the 2016 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kuzniewski, Anthony J. Thy Honored Name: A History of the College of the Holy Cross, 1843-1994. Catholic University of America Press, 1999. 67. Print.
  2. ^ http://www.boston.com/sports/colleges/mens_basketball/articles/2006/05/19/it_should_not_be_a_cross_to_bear/?page=1

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