LSU band member continues unlikely tradition, becomes third sibling to play at championship game
BATON ROUGE - A trio of brothers, all members of the LSU band past and present, will have each performed at the National Championship game.
The trifecta is complete, with the youngest brother getting the chance Monday.
Before sitting down with WBRZ, the eldest brother Billy Hochkeppel wrote about the lucky coincidence on social media. Billy played the trumpet for the Tiger Band when LSU beat Ohio State back in 2007.
“It’s the life blood, it creates the atmosphere, when the band plays, the crowd's listening," said Billy, now the band director at Southside High School in Youngsville.
Chris Hochkeppel continued the legacy in 2012 when he played the mellophone during the match-up against Alabama. While that year didn’t prove favorable for the Tigers, Hochkeppel said it was still exhilarating to perform.
“Even though we lost the National Championship, we were a really great team,” he said.
Chris, founding member and vocalist for the roots-rock band 'Burris' said his time playing for the Tiger Band, created a life-long impact.
“Spending so much time together, traveling to games, winning and losing, it really builds something,” he said.
Now it’s saxophonist and LSU junior David Hochkeppel's turn to wow the crowds for the team that has it all.
“We’ve been watching Joe Burrow all year, and there’s been some pretty amazing moments. To see everything pay off, to see the hype never stop and to get to this point, nothing can really stop us now.”
After graduation, David sees himself as a high school band director, just like Billy.
And the musical roots run deep for the Hochkeppels. Their father, William Hochkeppel, serves as Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. And their mother, Robin, serves as the Band Director at Acadiana Renaissance Charter Academy.
Billy Hochkeppel says it didn’t take much convincing for his brothers to follow in his footsteps, but it’s incredible how everything aligned for his family and the team.
“It means the world that they are here, all the way through,” he said.