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"The Eyes of Texas"

"The Eyes of Texas" is the official Alma Mater of the University of Texas. It was written in 1903 by John Sinclair, in response to a request that a song be written for the Cowboy Minstrel Show. Since he was given only a few hours in which to come up with a tune, Mr. Sinclair hit upon the idea of using a famous saying of Colonel Prather, who was the President of the University. The Colonel always told his audiences to remember that "the eyes of Texas are upon you." This expression was fitted to the tune of "I've Been working on the Railroad."

Sinclair, dressed in minstrel attire with a black face, sang the song in imitation of President Prather's serious tone and solemn expression. The beloved President soon passed away, and it was not until after the song was sung at his funeral in tribute that it achieved its complete dignity. Now, it is played prior to the start and at the close of all Texas sporting events and at all other official University of Texas functions. The original manuscript hangs in the Alumni Center. The complete original lyrics are as follows:

I once did know a President,
Away down South, in Texas.
And, always, everywhere he went,
He saw the eyes of Texas.
Original quartet to sing 'The Eyes of Texas' The Eyes of Texas are upon you,
All the live long day.
The Eyes of Texas are upon you,
You can not get away.
Do not think you can escape them
At night or early in the morn-
The Eyes of Texas are upon you
'Till Gabriel blows his horn.

Sing me a song of Prexy,
Of days long since gone by.
Again I seem to great him
And hear his kind reply.
Smiles of gracious welcome
Before my memory rise,
Again I hear him say to me,
"Remember Texas' Eyes."

"Texas Fight"

"The Eyes of Texas" is frequently followed by another traditional song: "Texas Fight", known to LHB as "Taps". "Taps" is the official fight song of The University of Texas and was written by Colonel Walter S. Hunnicutt in collaboration with James E. King, then director of the Marlin High School Band. The words of the song as finally adopted, were written by "Blondie" Pharr, director of the Longhorn Band from 1917 to 1937. "Taps" is played following touchdowns and extra points at Texas football games as well as on thousands of other occasions.

From a 1952 letter by Colonel Walter S. Hunnicutt on the history of Texas Fight:

"I wrote 'Texas Fight' ... in an attempt to counteract the songs and yells of the Texas Aggies, which were not too complimentary to our Student Body and some of which tended to ridicule 'The Eyes of Texas'.

"Long before I entered The University of Texas in 1909 and until about the year 1928 the Aggies had one of the most effective and awe inspiring songs used by any student body any where any time. 'Farmers Fight' at that time was their sacred College song. ... It was to them what 'The Eyes of Texas' had always been to us. The song was a repetition of the words 'Farmers Fight' sung to the well known bugle call 'Taps' in the same slow tempo as the bugle call is used by the army for lights out at night.

"Returning to Marlin, TX after World War One I resumed my practice of attending most of the Texas foot-ball games, especially those with A. & M. It occurred to me that an effective way to strike back at the Aggies was to write a 'Texas Fight' song in answer to their 'Farmers Fight' using the same bugle call 'Taps' changed to lively march time and having 'Texas' throughout the song instead of 'Farmers'. 'Texas Fight' (Texas Taps) is the result."

Texas Fight, Texas Fight,
And it's goodbye to A&M.;
Texas Fight, Texas Fight,
And we'll put over one more win.
Texas Fight, Texas Fight,
For it's Texas that we love best.
Hail, Hail, The gang's all here,
And it's good-bye to all the rest!

Yea Orange! Yea White!
Yea Longhorns! Fight! Fight! Fight!
Texas Fight! Texas Fight,
Yea Texas Fight!
Texas Fight! Texas Fight,
Yea Texas Fight!

The Eyes of Texas are upon you,
All the livelong day.
The Eyes of Texas are upon you,
You cannot get away.
Texas Fight, Texas Fight,
For it's Texas that we love best.
Hail, Hail, The gang's all here,
And it good-bye to all the rest!

Note: The line, "Hail, Hail, the gang's all here" is usually replaced with "Give 'em hell, Give 'em hell, Go Horns Go!"

"March Grandioso"

Another song that has become famous as one of our trademarks is "March Grandioso". Since its introduction in 1955 by then director, Vincent R. DiNino, this classic has become a fight song as T-E-X-A-S is spelled out by the fans in time to the music.

"March of the Longhorns"

Our second fight song is "March Of The Longhorns". It is played during the formation of the pre-game block 'T', Script Texas, and other charted shows. If listened to closely, people can hear "The Eyes of Texas" mixed in this song.

"Wabash Cannonball"

Originally introduced in 1970 by then director, Vincent R. DiNino, the "Wabash Cannonball" has become a famous Texas tradition. "Wabash Cannonball" was then legendary Longhorn football coach Darrell K. Royal's favorite tune. Mr. DiNino thought it would be a great way to salute the three-time national championship winning coach, and it has remained a crowd favorite ever since.

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