At the end of the third quarter, the crowd rises, arms lock and 90,000 begin to sway to a simple, 10-stanza song.
As the crowd draws out the last high note of “We Are The Boys From Old Florida,” Ben Hill Griffin Stadium resumes its regular, Richter scale-registering raucous. But for some fans, like local artist Mark Gaignard, the tune lingers and the less-than-a-minutelong chorus isn’t enough to mute the calling song for all hard-core Gators fans.
So Gaignard, former front man of the band Big Sky, is recording his own version of the song for the charity Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Florida.
The studio-recorded song will be in Jack Johnson spirit.
Paul Halpern, executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Florida, said all of the funds will go directly to helping local children.
With his YouTube version garnering more than 4,600 views in two weeks, Gaignard feels like it’s only a matter of time before he begins making money for the charity.
Although the tune is prominently featured by UF athletic teams, Gaignard doesn’t think he should owe royalties when the song is put up for sale.
“I would love to see them try and squash it,” he said. “Do you know how much extra publicity that would be?”
David A. Waybright, UF director of bands, confirmed in an e-mail that the university owns rights to the band version but the lyrics and tune are public domain for anyone to use.
“You know I’m a good guy, and I’ve played a lot of shows and had a lot of fans,” Gaignard said. “But I would be very proud if I can contribute in this way.”
For more information, search “We Are The Boys” on YouTube or visit bbbsmidflorida.org.