Hail Hail (Grand Old Team) - SongThis is a featured page

Songs and Anthems | Legends and Supporters | History of the song

The Celtic Song

As sung on the terraces

#Hail Hail, the Celts are here,
What the hell do we care,
What the hell do we care,
Hail Hail, the Celts are here,
What the hell do we care now..

For its a grand old team to play for,
For its a grand old team to see,
And if you know the history,
Its enough to make your heart go,
GO-OH-OH-OH! {or, 9-In-A-Row}

We don't care what the animals say,
What the hell do we care,
For all we know,
Is that there's going to be a show,
And the Glasgow Celtic will be there. #

Full Version

#For it's a grand old team to play for,

For it's a grand old team be dad,
And when you read it's history,
It's enough to make your heart go sad,
God bless them.

We don't care if we win lose or draw,
Darn the hair do we care,
For we only know that there's going to be a show,
And the Glasgow Celtic will be there.

Sure it's the best darn team in Scotland,
And its players all are grand,
We support the Celtic,
As they are the finest in the land
We love them,
We'll be there to give the Bhoys a cheer
When the league flag flies,
And they cheers us up when we know the Scottish Cup
Is coming home to rest at Paradise.

Sure it's a grand old team to play for,
Sure it's a grand old team be dad,
And when you read it's history,
It's enough to make your heart go sad,
God bless them.
We don't care if we win lose or draw,
Darn the hair do we care,
For we only know that there's going to be a show,
And the Glasgow Celtic will be there,
And the Glasgow Celtic will be there.#

History of the song

Celtic Song

The (almost) complete history of Hail Hail and The Celtic Song, with links for your listening pleasure!

It all starts in 1853 with the Opera Il Trovatore (The Troubadour), written by Verdi. In act II, scene 1, the gypsies sing the famous Anvil Chorus

You can watch a performance of the Anvil Chorus below. Pay attention at 0:58 in:
Youtube Link - The Anvil Chorus

Fast forward to 1879. W.S Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan write the comic opera The Pirates of Penzance. They heavily rip off Verdi's Anvil chorus for the song "With cat-like tread, upon our prey we steal", which is sung by the pirates at the climax of the show.

You can watch a performance of "With cat-like tread" below:
Youtube Link - With Cat-Like Tread

Pay attention to the chorus at 0:37, the words are:

Come, friends, who plough the sea,
Truce to navigation;
Take another station;
Let’s vary piracee
With a little burglaree!
Come, friends, who plough the sea,
Truce to navigation;
Take another station;
Let’s vary piracee
With a little burglaree!

Now fast forward to 1917. A military marching song is written by D.A. Estron and Theodore Morse called "Hail Hail the gangs all here", based on "With Cat-like Tread". The song is first recorded by Irving Kaufman, and becomes a number one hit in 1918.
Click below to listen to "Hail Hail the gangs all here" as sung by Kaufman in 1917.
Archive.org link - Hail Hail the gangs all here

Sounds familiar doesn't it?

The lyrics to the chorus are:

Hail! Hail! the gang's all here,
What the deuce do we care,
What the deuce do we care,
Hail! Hail! we're full of cheer,
What the deuce do we care Bill!

After this, at some point prior to the 1960's the song is sung on the Parkhead Terraces as:

Hail Hail, the Celts are here,
What the hell do we care,
What the hell do we care,
Hail Hail, the Celts are here,
What the hell do we care now...

Then, in 1961, "Mr Glasgow" Glen Daly records a completely unrelated song called "The Celtic Song". The music is credited as "traditional" and the lyrics are credited to "Liam Mallory". However, nobody seems to know who Liam Mallory is, and it has been suggested that it is actually a pseudonym for Glen Daly himself!
It is also suggested however, that the song was written by a man called Mick McLaughlin, known as "Garngad Mick", who allegedly also wrote "Hampden in the Sun". The story goes that he sold the rights to the the Celtic Song to Glen Daly for a fiver!

Click below to download the famous Glen Daly version of The Celtic Song:
Megaupload Link - The Celtic Song
The Celtic Song lyrics

Glen Daly also released a song called "Hail Hail Celtic" which is another completely original song, obviously inspired by the common "Hail Hail the Celts are Here" terrace chant. It bears some resemblance to Irving Kaufman song above.
Click below to download Glen Daly singing "Hail Hail Celtic".
MegaUpload Link - Hail Hail Celtic


So today, when the Celtic fans sing "hail hail the celts are here" followed by "its a grand old team...", we are singing two different songs, of which you now know the (almost) complete history!

History written by KDS Poster chris1983

Links


Belfast Celtic's Minstrel Bhoy and the Roots of the Celtic Song

Source: http://www.belfastceltic.org/celticsong.htmlHail hail pic

Thousands of Celtic fans sing The Celtic Song every week at football matches or in bars, clubs, schools and factories from Turf Lodge to Timbuktu! But if you asked them, how many of the green and white choristers would know the history of the song and realize that it actually originated in Belfast? As the Belfast Celtic Museum prepares to open again on St Patrick’s Day, Terry Dick, son of the famous Scottish musical impresario Glen Daly, who made the song famous, gives full credit to Charlie Tully, Belfast’s Minstrel Bhoy!

Glasgow’s immediate post-war years were bleak, with rationing still in force, but Charlie Tully brought much needed smiles and laughter to the city sporting scene.
Soon he had an adoring entourage to rival anything the High Kings had at the Hill of Tara!

On his arrival in Glasgow, Celtic billeted Charlie in the old Kenilworth Hotel in Queen Street and for years afterwards it became a favourite haunt for Celtic players and football personalities.

The Belfast Bhoy held court with wisecracks about the game and its personalities, tales of Belfast and clashes between Linfield and the great Belfast Celtic.

All this was hungry, thirsty work and the ever generous Celt insisted that the not inconsiderable food and drink bill, being run up by his pals, should go on the club’s account! However, if Charlie was in a particularly mischievous mood, he would decide to charge it to his team mate Jock Weir’s bill!

When the stories were exhausted and the customary sing-song started, Charlie would invariably sing the praises of his beloved Belfast Celts with; “Sure it’s a grand old team to play for.”

A version of only a few choruses perhaps, but Glen Daly recalled it years later, when he recorded his own ‘Celtic Song’.
In London in August 1961, at Simpson’s in The Strand, the historic restaurant first opened in 1828, Daly had just finished what was reputed to be the best roast dinner in England. Famous guests of the exquisite London restaurant had included Vincent Van Gogh, Charles Dickens, George Bernard Shaw, Benjamin Disraeli and William Gladstone, but as the diners on that late summer’s night began to drift away, Daly stared intently at his menu, hoping for inspiration.

He was due back in Pye Record’s Marble Arch Studios in one hour to record The Celtic Song, but the final version of his second verse had yet to be completed. He stared intently at the menu and tried to think of where he’d first heard the song. Of course! The Clown Prince of Paradise and good pal, Charles Patrick Tully, had obliged the company one night in the Kenilworth. He smiled as he recalled the magical Irishman and his soft brogue as he sang:

We don’t care if we win, lose or draw;
Darn the hare we care.
Because we only know
That there’s going to be a show
And the Belfast Celtic will be there!

Tully, Charlie - PicAs he walked into the Pye studios, he was determined to give the Celtic supporters something to be proud of! Jack Emblow, the famous Jazz Accordionist, whose music would later penetrate every living room in Britain with his unmistakable theme tune for the BBC’s hit comedy series ‘Allo ‘Allo, played the first few bars of the intro while Glen Daly moved towards the microphone and the Celtic song echoed down the years.

At the Celtic Supporters Association Rally in November 1959, over three thousand fans gathered in Glasgow’s magnificent St. Andrew’s Halls to bid a fond farewell to Charlie on the occasion of his retirement from the Scottish game and his return to St Patrick’s sod.

On stage, Glen Daly recounted every Tully story and joke, as Celtic Chairman Robert Kelly smiled knowingly and in an emotional finale the crowd sang another chorus; “Will ye no come back again?” and cheered the auld yin to the echo!
The programme notes for the evening eloquently conveyed the place Tully held in Celtic hearts.


They read; “Tonight, we pay tribute to Charlie on his retirement from the Scottish football scene and wish him all the best in his new capacity as player-manager at Cork Hibs. Charlie gave all of us many happy hours by his football wizardry and his Tullyisms. It is players of Tully’s greatness that have helped make Celtic great!”

Almost two decades on from his Kenilworth Hotel days, on May 25 1967, as he was leaving the Estadio Nacional in Lisbon, in the hot midst of Celtic’s finest hour, Charlie was mobbed by celebrating fans that still accorded him legendary status.

When asked where he could have played in the team that had just become European Champions, the sparkling wit of Tully was in evidence once more, as he replied; “Sure I could have taken the corners!”.

But Charlie was being uncharacteristically modest on this occasion, for surely he could have added his soft Irish brogue to Bertie Auld’s inspirational chorus of The Celtic Song in the stadium tunnel.

After all, it was the song he’d brought all those years ago from the Donegall Road in Belfast, which has become one of the club’s great pre-match anthems, welcoming Celtic sides onto the pitch for the last 50 years.

Enshrined in song and story, the fame and memory of Charlie Tully remain evergreen - in the pantheon of Celtic Greats, he commands a unique prominence and affection. Stellar personality, wit and raconteur, supreme entertainer – the darlin’ minstrel bhoy of the Celtic faithful had it all!


From the Celtic View (22 Jan 1992)
Celtic Song Mirror


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