When Irish Eyes Are Smiling

When Irish Eyes Are Smiling

"When Irish Eyes Are Smiling" is a lighthearted song in tribute to Ireland. Its lyrics were written by Chauncey Olcott and George Graff, Jr., set to music composed by Ernest Ball, for Olcott's production of "The Isle O' Dreams", and Olcott sang the song in the show. It was first published in 1912.

The song continued to be familiar standard for generations. Decades later it was used as the opening song on the radio show "Duffy's Tavern". The song has been recorded on over 200 singles and albums and by many famous singers, including Bing Crosby, Connie Francis, and Roger Whittaker. [ [http://www.geocities.com/ajsblue/misc/misc_2.html Information about recordings] ]

The song in the news

The song gained momentary notoriety in Canada after the so-called Shamrock Summit between Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and U.S. President Ronald Reagan held on St. Patrick's Day, 1985. At the end of the evening, the two leaders jointly performed "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling", for which Mulroney was extensively criticized in the Canadian press. [cite book|last=Ferguson|first=Will|authorlink=Will Ferguson|title=Why I Hate Canadians|origyear=1997
accessdate=2007-09-03|accessyear=2007|publisher=Douglas & McIntyre|location=Vancouver, BC, Canada|isbn=1550546007|pages=112-113|chapter=11

In film

"When Irish Eyes are Smiling" has been used in the following movies: [ [http://www.poconorecord.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070306/HOLIDAYS01/603170301/-1/holidays01 Includes list of films in which the song is used] ]
*"Return to Me," 2000
*"It's A Great Day For The Irish," 1999
*"Husbands," 1970
*"Ducking the Devil," 1957
*"Canary Row," 1950
*"Top o' the Morning," 1949
*"The Time of Your Life," 1948
*"Wild Irish Rose," 1947
*"Irish Eyes Are Smiling," 1944 (This is an actual movie about Ernest R. Ball)
*"My Favorite Blonde," 1942
*"Always a Bride," 1940
*"The Long Voyage Home," 1940
*"Tear Gas Squad," 1940
*"It All Came True," 1940
*"The Fighting 69th," 1940
*"Let Freedom Ring" 1939
*"The Crowd Roars," 1938
*"Roof Tops of Manhattan," 1935
*"The Irish in Us," 1935
*"In Caliente," 1935
*"Ireland: 'The Emerald Isle," 1934
*"Stage Mother," 1933

Copyright dispute

A dispute over Copyright renewal for "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling" ended up in the US Supreme Court in 1943. [http://vlex.com/vid/20014757 U.S. Supreme Court FRED FISHER MUSIC CO. v. M. WITMARK & SONS, 318 U.S. 643 (1943)] ] (However, today there is no dispute as to its copyright status; it is now in the public domain, since it was published in the USA prior to 1923.)


External links

* [http://www.contemplator.com/ireland/irisheye.html Lyrics]
* [http://www.letrs.indiana.edu/cgi/b/bib/bib-idx?&g=sheetmusic&c=starr&c=devincent&view=reslist&type=simple&q1=Olcott%2C%20Chauncey&rgn1=names Sheet music and images]

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