Though Southern Miss jumped out to a large lead in the first half of play, a vast majority of those fans remained in their seats, anxiously awaiting the contests that were set to take place at after the game between two of the South’s most renowned music programs: Southern Miss’ Pride of Mississippi Marching Band, and Jackson State’s “Sonic Boom of the South” Marching Band.
The Sonic Boom, led by interim director Dowell Taylor, is traditionally one of the largest and most popular marching bands in the state. They’re led by five drum majors, known as the “Jackson Five,” and have recently been referenced to by the likes of Time Magazine, Motown Records, and hip hop artist Drake.
Southern Miss’ Pride of Mississippi Marching Band has quite the history as well. The band performed at the inauguration ceremonies for both President Franklin D. Roosevelt and President Jimmy Carter. In the 1980s they were listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most televised marching band. Most recently, The Pride competed in the Limerick International Band Championships in Dublin, Ireland, and was awarded “Best Band Overall.”
The bands entertained the crowd at halftime with shows featuring well-known tunes. The Pride performed hits by different generations of iconic pop bands, such as “Everybody” and “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys and “Daydream Believer” by the Monkees. The Sonic Boom followed that performance with a list of hits including the Spice Girls’ hit “Say You’ll Be There,” Ariana Grande’s new single “No Tears Left to Cry,” and “In My Feelings” by Drake.
Congratulations to Dowell Taylor who has been selected by the Board of Directors of the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame Foundation, Inc. Taylor will be inducted in its 2018 Class during the 33rd Annual Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Friday, September 28, 2018 in Atlanta, GA.
Taylor is the Interim Director of Bands, Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Music Technology at Jackson State University and is being honored for his exceptional achievements in the field of Arts & Entertainment. [read bio]. He joins a distinguished list of over 300 Hall of Famers who have been enshrined into the Hall of Fame since 1986, including such notables as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dr. Benjamin E. Mays, Walter Payton, Leontyne Price, Chief Justice Thurgood Marshall, Oprah Winfrey, Ambassador Andrew Young, Will Packard and Nancy Wilson.
The Department of Alumni and Constituency Relations coordinated the submission of applications to the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame Foundation and cordially congratulates Dowell Taylor for the esteemed honor.
WOW!!....that "Nights Over Egyptian" was on point, balanced and precise. Daayyyuuummm!!! Didn't even know JSU had this in their music book.
Didn't know the young people knew this kind of musical classic.
Taylor, director of bands, trumpets selection into National Black College Hall of Fame
JSU’s director of bands Dowell Taylor recently was inducted into the National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame Foundation in Atlanta for his outstanding contributions to the arts and entertainment industry.
The Hall of Fame Foundation aims to sustain and grow Historically Black Colleges and Universities through “alumni recognition, scholarships, training and technical assistance and programs to promote humanitarian involvement,” according to its Website.
Taylor described his induction as an “humbling experience.” He hailed the Hall of Fame Foundation as a distinguished organization in which professionals are recognized by HBCUs in various disciplines by peers and organizations.
Furthermore, he said, “It gives one the feeling that all of the work done across the years on behalf of students have been well worth it.” He especially praised the support of JSU President William B. Bynum Jr. and wife Deborah. Also, Taylor acknowledged the importance of his wife, children and other family members in achieving the notable honor.
Veronica Cohen, vice president of Institutional Advancement and External Affairs, said she was overjoyed by the award bestowed upon JSU’s director of bands.
“I was absolutely thrilled for Mr. Taylor to receive such a prestigious honor. I thought the recognition was timely and paid adequate homage to his years of dedicated service to the university, the Sonic Boom of the South and the overall art form of music.”
Meanwhile, in keeping with the goals of the Black College Alumni Hall of Fame Foundation, Taylor said he plans to continue making a difference in the lives of others. Even as he celebrates his new honor, he also salutes those “who endeavor to take HBCU students to the next level.”
Division of Athletics supporter Nora Dean Oatis played a significant role in the history of the J-Settes, cheerleaders and tumblers. She’s congratulated by Dr. Walter Reed, left, and Ashley Robinson, a JSU vice president and Athletic Director. (Photo by Charles A. Smith)
Narah Dean Oatis, supporter: “This is indescribable. It’s awesome. Humbling. It’s a blessing to be able to receive your flowers while you’re living.” Oatis recalled her experience with the J-Settes, who performed at Motown many years ago. Also, her cheerleaders won SWAC recognition in its first-ever competition.” ATHLETIC HISTORY: JSU Department of Athletics presented Oatis an Award for Dedicated Service in 2008 after 32 years of commitment related to JSU athletic performances. She became director of the Sonic Boom of the South’s Prancing Jaycettes (now J-Settes) in 1975, devoting 21 years to the dance group. She also worked with JSU Twirlers and cheerleaders.
Famed music manager will be grand marshal of JSU homecoming parade
Bryant’s longest client, five-time GRAMMY® Award-winning multiplatinum icon Lil Wayne, headlined last year’s homecoming concert
By Mary Grace Eppes | October 8, 2018 at 3:21 PM CDT - Updated October 8 at 3:21 PM
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - JSU alum and prominent music manager Cortez “Tez” Bryant will be the grand marshal for the Jackson State University homecoming parade.
Bryant, of Maverick Music Management, became one of the entertainment industry’s pre-eminent managers by identifying and igniting the potential of game-changing music outliers Lil Wayne, Drake, Nicki Minaj, G-Eazy and others.
Bryant’s longest client, five-time GRAMMY® Award-winning multiplatinum icon Lil Wayne, headlined last year’s homecoming concert. The two grew up together as best friends in New Orleans.
Bryant would shuttle back and forth between shows on the weekend and classes at JSU during the week as Wayne’s star began to rise. By the time of his college graduation, the JSU alum had formally stepped into the role of Wayne’s manager.
With 2004’s platinum-certified Tha Carter, Lil Wayne commenced a legendary run that continues to this day. Classic albums Tha Carter II and Like Father, Like Son followed in between a storied series of mixtapes before he released his magnum opus, the triple-platinum Tha Carter III – which earned a staggering total of four GRAMMY® Awards and unanimous critical renown.
On the eve of Tha Carter III era, Bryant merged his company with entrepreneur Gee Roberson’s Hip Hop Since 1978 to create The Blueprint Group, where he is co-CEO. Simultaneously, Wayne and Bryant launched Young Money Entertainment, in partnership with Cash Money Records, as home to Drake, Nicki Minaj, and more.
On September 27, 2018, Wayne finally released the highly-anticipated Carter V. It is the twelfth studio album from the New Orleans artist.