The Razorback band is one of the oldest collegiate bands in the United States. Formed in 1874 in the University of Arkansas's fourth year of operation, the Cadet Corps Band served in all functions of campus life. Not only did the band participate in all of the formalities of the Military Art Department, but it also played in football games, pageants, and commencement exercises.
On June 5, 1924, the Lambda Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi, National Honorary Band Fraternity, was formed at the University of Arkansas. The fraternity's purpose was, and is to this day, to promote the existence and welfare of the University Band. On November 11, 1950, the Psi Chapter of Tau Beta Sigma, National Honorary Band Sorority, was founded at the University of Arkansas. Together with the Lambda Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi, they aided in making the University of Arkansas Band one of the premier collegiate musical organizations in the country.
After World War II, the band enjoyed steady growth, and divided into three bands: a football band, a concert band, and an R.O.T.C. band. In 1948, E.J. Marty became the Director of Bands and turned the 42-piece football band into the famous "Marching 100", known throughout America as one of the best bands in the nation.
In 1956, Dr. Richard A. "Doc" Worthington became Director of Bands and developed the MARCHING RAZORBACKS, an innovative and contemporary marching band whose style, form, and incredible sound continue to be a tradition here at the University of Arkansas.
In 1995, Eldon Janzen retired after leading the band through almost three decades of success. In response to his tremendous dedication, the University awarded him with the title "Director of Bands, Emeritus", the first such title to be given to any band director at the University of Arkansas.
The UA Bands continued to grow after W. Dale Warren was appointed Director of Bands. In 2000 the UA Wind Symphony performed in Carnegie Hall in New York City. In 2006, the John Phillip Sousa Foundation awarded the Razorback Marching Band with the Sudler Trophy, an annual award recognizing one university band for “the highest musical standards and innovative marching routines and ideas.”
Most recently, the Razorback Marching Band performed at the 2012 AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic in Cowboys Stadium and the 2011 BCS Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans. The band has performed at many other bowl games including the Fiesta, Orange, Cotton, Gator, Citrus, Liberty, Holiday, Independence, Carquest, Hall of Fame, Dixie, Bluebonnet, and Las Vegas bowls, as well as performing half-time shows at Dallas Cowboys football games.
Today, more than two percent of the undergraduate population of the University of Arkansas participates in the University of Arkansas Bands. Four concert bands, the 350-member Razorback Marching Band, and the 100-member Hogwild Pep Band provide enriching opportunities and music experiences for our students while honoring the traditions of our program and our university.