|Dr. Shelby Chipman|
Florida A&M University Marching 100
MIAMI, Florida -- The announcement caught some fans by surprise. But the alumni of Florida A&M’s famed Marching 100 say the selection of Shelby Chipman as the new director is more than music to their ears.
Chipman, a Miami native and longtime musician, has taken the reigns as head of the uber popular band. He becomes just the fourth director in the band’s modern history, following in the footsteps of legends William P. Foster and Julian White. And, he also is the first South Floridian to lead that prestigious program.
Chipman’s first on-field performance will be Labor Day weekend in South Florida when the FAMU Rattlers will face the University of Miami Hurricanes. But even before that, Chipman will return home late July to help groom another generation of budding bandsmen at the annual band camp, sponsored by the Black Archives History & Research Foundation of South Florida.
And South Florida band heads already are savoring the idea of seeing the Chipman-led Marching 100.
“We’re getting lots of calls … with Dr. Chipman having been a student in the band. Alumni are excited,” said Miranda Albury, an alumna who operates the HBCU Shuttle transportation service. “When they come to Miami the stands are going to be filled.”