By Kelli Sharpe
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Aristocrat of Bands and country music megastar Keith Urban came together during the singer’s recent tour stop in Nashville and the show stopping performance has taken the world by storm.
The TSU world renowned band, fondly called AOB, was featured as a part of Urban’s closing song, and number one hit “Wasted Time.” The singer introduced the band to a sold-out Bridgestone Arena.
The crowd roared with each marching step of head drum major Hassan Moody and the 40- member band ensemble. That was nothing compared to the dramatic closing that culminated when both Urban and Moody took flight and landed in splits on stage. The photo and video have gone viral on social media.
Hassan, an Atlanta, Georgia native, said it was a once in a lifetime moment and it couldn’t have happened at any other place than at TSU. After having a day to reflect, the business administration major said it’s something he will always cherish.
“You can’t explain that type of experience; the energy was absolutely unbelievable!” said Moody. “Only at TSU. My band members and I are thankful to TSU and Mr. Urban for the opportunity.”
Dr. Reginald McDonald, director of bands, said the request came from Urban unexpectedly, a day before his Nashville appearance.
“The band’s performance was amazing, and the element of surprise for the audience made our appearance even more electric,” said McDonald.
“We truly appreciate Mr. Keith Urban for giving our students and university this type of exposure on a national stage. I woke up to an email about 5:30 Thursday morning from Urban’s associate manager basically saying that he wanted the band to perform with him to his tune “Wasted Time” at his concert Friday night.”
McDonald added he informed band staff about the request and gave specific instructions for them to work out the logistics. He said the students learned a valuable life lesson as musicians.
“Our students also had an opportunity to see the importance of being ready at a moment’s notice and staying ready for when the call is made. That’s how you shine. Our practice with Keith Urban was less than an hour before performing with him.”
This isn’t the first time TSU’s band has made national headlines or been in the spotlight. The AOB played on the lawn of the White House for President Barack Obama and guests in 2016 and performed at halftime of the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio. Both venues were the first for any college band.
“The university is extremely proud of our students for their spectacular performance with country music star Mr. Keith Urban,” said TSU President Glenda Glover. “The Aristocrat of Bands serves as one of the institution’s greatest ambassadors as they travel around the nation, and even here at home, showcasing the best and brightest student musicians. We are a comprehensive university offering top academic programs and extracurricular activities. This iconic moment where HBCU meets country music could only happen at TSU, Nashville’s only public and most affordable university.”
Please visit the TSU homepage at www.tnstate.edu and social media to view video and photos of the performance.
Department of Media Relations
Tennessee State University
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About Tennessee State University
With more than 8,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 24 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.