The Happy Birthday Song

16 02 2011

Probably most everyone on this planet has heard one of the most famous songs of all time — the Birthday Song. Today happens to be my day of birth. But enough about me… I thought we’d take this opportunity to tell a little story about how the “Happy Birthday” song came about.

Did y’all know it started right here in the South? It’s consistently touted as the most popular enduring song of the English language, and it all happened when two Kentuckians, Mildred and Patty Hill wrote a little song they called “Good Morning to All” in 1893. Patty was a kindergarten principal, and her sister, Mildred, composer and pianist, so they wrote a simple tune, easy enough for children to remember.

They never copywrited it or were credited until 1935, when Preston Ware Orem established a copywrite that won’t technically expire until 2030. So everytime you gather around at a child’s birthday party, toasting with cake and candles and the happy little ditty, technically, you should be paying to the Warner/Chappell Music company, who currently owns the song. But considering it’s valued at over $5 million, I don’t think they’ll be coming to collect.

So at your next birthday, make a wish! And thank two Kentucky sisters, for writing this

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