an important part of what makes the Mustang
Band the unique organization that it is.
The Band has a storied and colorful history that may be unmatched in the collegiate realm.
When SMU decided it needed a mascot as a
symbol of its unified spirit, the faculty and
students made nominations as to what they
thought might serve the purpose adequately. On
October 25, 1917, the University community
voted from among four possibilities - Bison,
Greyhounds, Pioneers, and Mustangs.
The contributor of the winning symbol was Miss
Dorothy Amann, President Hyer's secretary. She
was struck by the idea while watching the team
practice from her office in Dallas Hall:
"Why, out there, on the football field,
it looks just like a bunch of wild
November 4, 1932, Peruna I made his first
appearance at an SMU football game against
Texas A&M University. The feisty black
Shetland pony was a gift from Cy Barcus and Ray Morrison, the Band Director and Football Coach at the time. Named after a potent
"medicine" of the prohibition era,
Peruna was an immediate success as the ultimate
embodiment of the Mustang spirit on the
campus. When he was struck and killed by a car
on Mockingbird Lane during a 1934 Halloween
celebration, the entire University community
went into mourning.
Since that time, SMU has been represented by
eight Perunas. All of them (except the first)
have been donated and cared for through an
endowment opened by the Culwell family.
During the early days of the Mustang Band, Peruna accompanied the organization
everywhere, appearing on theater playbills as
"the midget wonder horse!"
Band was making its early reputation around
the United States, the amazing thing to most
listeners was that here was this collegiate
marching band turning out high-keyed,
precision, driving, articulate, genuine jazz;
not those special gimmicky jazz arrangements
for marching bands. The Mustang Band plays
jazz-full and loud, with all the gusto of
three or four stage bands blowing at the same
The Band has had many outstanding arrangers in
its history. Bob Farrar created many fine
arrangements during the 1940's and 1950's. Doug Williamson wrote voluminously for the
band during the late 1950's and throughout the
1960's and 1970's. The rendition of Shanty
Town that the band concludes each performance
with is one of his ingenious creations. But we could not mention arrangers without including our beloved Jack Rohr. Jack was a member of the band and
the student arranger when he attended SMU
during the 1940's, and was the Assistant
Director and Staff Arranger from 1962-1981.
Jack contributed so much to the band,
including Pony Battle Cry, Mod Peruna, and
Dial "M" for Mustangs, not to mention dozens of years writing music for Pigskin Revue.
Tommy Tucker, III was also a member of the
Mustang Band, a student arranger of the Band,
an SMU alumnus, and the Associate Director and
Staff Arranger from 1984-88, and 1995-present.
Tommy began writing for the band during the
mid-1970's and continues to create fresh, new
Another Mustang Band tradition is upholding
our reputation as "The Hub of SMU
standing throughout Mustang football and
basketball games and cheering the Ponies on until the final whistle, the Band fulfills this vital role.
The Band also promotes a very real sense of family. The first
week of Band orientation demands that all new
members learn the names of their fellow band
members, and all upper-class band members
learn the names of the first-year members.
This bonding experience is a constant comfort
to remind oneself that even as a newcomer on
the SMU campus, you have many friends to fall
back on for help, encouragement, and fun.
The Mustang Band is especially proud of its
reputation as "The Best-Dressed Band in
the Land." We have more than 29 different
uniforms made up of varying combinations of
pants, shirts, coats, and ties. To earn and uphold the Mustang Band's
reputation as "The Best-Dressed Band in
the Land," band members wear one uniform
for the pregame performance, and change just
before halftime to another one for all Mustang