University of Iowa

Traditions

“HEY JUDE”

Arranged by former HMB director Tom Davis, this popular Beatles classic was first played during a halftime show in 1968. The band then began to play the song during the break between the 3rd and 4th quarters. The song is now played during the band’s Rec Building Concert, post-game performances and other special events.

BACK IN BLACK & THE SWARM

During Hayden Fry’s time as head coach at Iowa, he introduced many traditions, including “The Swarm.” Led by Herky Hawkeye, the team jogs slowly onto the field through the tunnel. With the captains in front, the entire team locks hands as a symbol of strength, unity and support for each other. Today, the team entrance is accompanied by AC/DC’s “Back in Black” blaring through the sound system.

HAWKEYE VICTORY POLKA

The HMB plays their rendition of the song “In Heaven There Is No Beer” after every Hawkeye victory. The band alternates between the verses instrumentally and vocally, leading the Hawkeye fans. The song was originally played many times during a game when it was first introduced in the 1960s. However, controversy arose concerning the song’s lyrics. Critics of the song claimed that the tune promoted the abuse of alcohol, and that it was an inappropriate song for the band to play. In 2001, the University of Iowa President completely banned the song from being played, either instrumentally or vocally. However, overwhelming support for the song prompted the President to bring the song back to Hawkeye athletic events: “In Heaven, there is no beer… That’s why we drink it here… And when we’re gone from here… Our friends will be drinking all the beer.” The song is now performed only after Hawkeye victories and on special occasions. The HMB does not circulate sheet music of the “Hawkeye Victory Polka” or teach incoming members how to play it. Members must learn the song by ear.