The Yankee Doodle Boy

March 13, 2008 at 1:23 pm Leave a comment

This song, obviously referring back to the Revolutionary War tune Yankee Doodle, was written by George M. Cohan way back in 1904 for his new Broadway musical “Little Johnny Jones” (the same musical that introduced the long-standing hit Give My Regards to Broadway).

I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy,
A Yankee Doodle, do or die.
A real live nephew of my Uncle Sam,
Born on the Fourth of July.
I’ve got a Yankee Doodle sweetheart,
She’s my Yankee Doodle joy.
Yankee Doodle went to London,
       just to ride the ponies;
I am that Yankee Doodle Boy!

The part of this song that is most commonly known today (listed above) is actually just the chorus of Cohan’s composition.  Click here to hear the song with verse and chorus, as sung by Cohan’s friend Billy Murray and recorded to an Edison Phonograph cylinder in 1905.  You can also click here to watch Hollywood star James Cagney perform the song in a clip from the movie “Yankee Doodle Dandy.”

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