Saturday, January 24, 2009

Old Lang Syne

"For my part I never had the least thought or inclination of turning poet until I got heartily in love, and then rhyme and song were, in a manner, the spontaneous language of my heart." Robert Burns (1759-1796) is Scotland's National Poet

"Freedom and Whisky Gang Thegither"

Daniel Grayling Fogelberg (August 13, 1951 Peoria, Illinois – December 16, 2007 Deer Isle, Maine) was an American singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, whose music was inspired by sources as diverse as folk, pop, classical, jazz, and bluegrass music.

"Auld Lang Syne" is usually sung each year at midnight on New Year's Day

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to min'...." Auld Lang Syne" was played by Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians as a New Year's Eve song for the first time on December 31, 1929. Though it was played as the band's theme song for years, and it had even occasionally been sung on New Year's Eve, this was the first time that Lombardo's group played it at the Hotel Roosevelt Grill in New York City to usher in the new year. The annual tradition continued when the party moved to the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (1959-1976) and the song still kicks off the Times Square celebration every New Year's Eve.

One of my favorite "memory" songs - Old Lang Syne especially when I hear it this time of year when it snows out and I can blast it on my built in MP3 Player car radio. Hope you enjoy it too!

same old lang syne

Dan Fogelberg - Leader Of The Band (Covers Slide)


Dan Fogelberg, the singer and songwriter whose hits "Leader of the Band" and "Same Old Lang Syne" helped define the soft-rock era, died at his home in Maine after battling prostate cancer in December 2007.


A traditional Scottish song, customarily sung on New Year's Eve; the title means “Time Long Past.” The words, passed down orally, were recorded by the eighteenth-century poet Robert Burns. The song begins:

Should auld [old] acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to min'?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!


Robert Burns forwarded a copy of the original song to the Scots Musical Museum with the remark, “The following song, an old song, of the olden times, and which has never been in print, nor even in manuscript until I took it down from an old man's singing, is enough to recommend any air.” At the time it was fashionable to claim one's own work was "traditional"; therefore, one should take Burns' statement with mild scepticism. Some of the lyrics were indeed "collected" rather than composed by the poet; the ballad "Old Long Syne" printed in 1711 by James Watson shows considerable similarity in the first verse and the chorus to Burns' later poem.[2] It is a fair supposition to attribute the rest of the poem to Burns himself.[3]

There is some doubt as to whether the melody used today is the same one Burns originally intended, but it is widely used both in Scotland and in the rest of the world. Links to the original and contemporary melodies can be found here

Singing the song on Hogmanay or New Year's Eve very quickly became a Scots custom that soon spread to other parts of the British Isles. As Scots (and other Britons) emigrated around the world, they took the song with them.

Band leader Guy Lombardo is often credited with popularizing the use of the song at New Year’s celebrations in America, through his annual broadcasts on radio and TV, beginning in 1929. The song became his trademark; in addition to his live broadcasts, he recorded the song more than once, first in 1939, and at least once later, on September 29, 1947, in a record issued as a single by Decca Records as catalog #24260.[4]

However, he neither invented nor introduced the custom, even there. The ProQuest newspaper archive has articles dated 1896 that describe revellers on both sides of the Atlantic singing the song to usher in the New Year. Two examples follow:

"Holiday Parties at Lenox" (Massachusetts, USA) (1896) – The company joined hands in the great music room at midnight and sang “Auld Lang Syne” as the last stroke of 12 sounded and the new year came in.[5]
"New Year's Eve in London" (London, UK) (1910) – Usual Customs Observed by People of All Classes… The passing of the old year was celebrated in London much as usual. The Scottish residents gathered outside of St. Paul's Church and sang “Auld Lang Syne” as the last stroke of 12 sounded from the great bell.[6]

As detailed above, auld lang syne literally means "old long since", but a more idiomatic English translation would be something like "long long ago",[1] "days of long ago", "in olden days", or even "once upon a time". "For old time's sake" or "to the good old days" may be modern-day expressions, in common use as a toast, that capture the spirit of "for auld lang syne".


"Auld Lang Syne" is usually sung each year at midnight on New Year's Day

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