High School fight songs elicit not only spirit among the crowd, but tug at the heartstrings of alumni when played at a sporting event. Members of the high school band belt out a lively tune while members of the student body sing along. Cheerleaders practice a dance to accompany the high school fight song during ball games and pep rallies.
What Is a High School Fight Song
Rooting on the home team takes on a completely new meaning when the fight song plays. School spirit songs are also referred to as a pep song or school alma mater. However, an alma mater is traditionally a slower paced song and focuses more on overall school pride, not athletics. The marching band often performs dance moves and turns while taking the field and playing the fight song. Cheerleaders generally utilize pom-poms in a fast-paced dance routine while the song plays. School pep rallies often begin with a rousing rendition of the school song to hype the crowd and inspire the team before a football or basketball game.
Performing the school song multiple times during a football game is commonplace. The high school marching band often enters the stadium playing the familiar tune. When the home team scores a touchdown, the band plays the spirit song while the cheerleaders entertain the crowd with the fight song dance.
During the annual homecoming football game, special spirit activities often take place during the pre-game. Alumni marching band members join in the fun of the big game of the season and dust off their instruments to play the familiar song one more time. Former cheerleaders have the opportunity to recall fond high school memories. Alumni cheerleaders can dig out their pom-poms, dance once again to the spirit song, and root on the current class of athletes and the crowd.
Marching along hometown streets during a local parade while playing and dancing to the fight song offers another chance to perfect the fight song, and entertain the crowd. A crowd of community members will cheer the high school athletes and musicians as they don their school colors during a community festival or homecoming parade. While participating in such a parade, the cheerleaders often throw out mini-sports balls featuring the school mascot while the song is playing.
Lyrics to high school fights songs encompass words pertaining to school pride, supporting the home team, and incorporate the name of the school and the school mascot. While shorter than a traditional song, lyrics emphasize fighting the other team, and working toward a victory with an upbeat flare. The school colors and clapping often find their way into a school fight song. Borrowing some phrases from a local college team, and adapting the mascot and colors to suite the local high school is a common practice when creating a fight song.
While all fight songs are unique to a particular school, a common theme often runs through them.
An example of typical lyrics:
We are the Vikings of VCHS
On the field or on the court
We are the best
Cheer for the brown and orange
Victory is on the wayWin this game the Viking way!
The dance to the school song is commonly a part of the cheerleading tryout routine. Both middle and high school cheerleaders learn the fight song, with judges analyzing their ability to perform the routine.
Altering the fight song from the original wording rarely occurs. The dance a high school cheerleading learned in 1950 is most likely the one still used today by the modern cheerleading squad. Successful fight songs adhere to tradition. When the marching band takes the field, or the pep band strikes a chord at a basketball game, the oldest spectator in the stands can still sing along to the fight song. By the time a youngster is old enough to try out for the high school cheerleading team, she will more than likely have already memorized the pom-pom dance routine the squad performs when the fight song plays.
- Initial Author: Tara Dodrill