The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

The award-winning Shaker Heights High School student news organization

The Shakerite

Heavy Metal, Featuring Brass

Marching band delivers Metallica standards at halftime tonight
Will Stewart
For the competition’s inaugural year, judges will select five finalists for each of three categories, which include high school and collegiate competitors. Metallica will decide the winner for each category. Two additional winners will be selected by fan voting.

The marching band will compete in the nationwide “For Whom the Band Tolls: Metallica Marching Band Competition” during tonight’s homecoming football game against Strongsville. 

According to the competition website, “Metallica challenges marching bands at all levels to craft the most exciting, unique, and impressive performances of Metallica’s music.”

The marching band will play arrangements of “Wherever I May Roam,” “For Whom The Bell Tolls” and “Lux Æterna” for the competition. The band will submit a video of the halftime show to competition organizers.

“It suits us very well, I think; we play big and loud. Rock is just good for us,” marching band director Jason Clemens said.

The halftime show will also include Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now,” during which eighth-graders can join the high school marching band on the field for a mass band performance, which was originally scheduled for Sept. 14 but canceled due to a threat that prevented fans and band members from attending the game. 

The winning high school band will receive a $15,000 prize, and  the fan favorite band will receive a $10,000 prize. “Ten thousand dollars couldn’t hurt, and it would be fun to put on the show anyway,” Clemens said.

Band director Daniel Crain said the four directors are especially excited for this show. “All of the band directors are kind of all middle-aged. We’re, like, in our early 40s, and we’re big music nerds, so when we were growing up in the ‘90s, Metallica was very up and coming,” he said.

Metallica is an American heavy metal band, formed in Los Angeles in 1981. Metallica’s current lineup consists of singer James Hetfield and drummer Lars Ulrich — both of whom co-founded the band — in addition to guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Since 1981, the group has sold more than 125 million albums.

The band will form Metallica’s signature “M”, along with formations of Metallica’s lead singer’s two favorite guitars, named “Flying V” and “Carl,” as a part of their drills.

We are going to “start it from darkness, just like a heavy metal concert: Turn all the lights out, start on the field with glow sticks, then bring [the lights] back on and rock out for a little bit,” Clemens said.  

The game kicks off at 7 p.m., and the band will take over Russell H. Rupp Field at halftime.

Clemens said he is looking forward to the show and encourages the crowd to participate. He said, “Get your phones out, get your flashlights out and cheer like crazy.”

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