Londonderry celebrates culture as famous Danny Boy tune turns 100 0
LONDONDERRY, Northern Ireland -- Danny Boy is arguably the most famous Irish song in the world. Many people know it is sung to a traditional Irish melody called The Londonderry Air.
The wistful ballad will be sung in pubs all over the world on March 17, St. Patrick's Day, but nowhere will it be sung with more feeling than here in its "hometown," for this is Danny Boy's 100th anniversary.
It was in early 1913 -- some like to think on St. Patrick's Day -- that Frederic Weatherly, an English lawyer and songwriter (who, incidentally, never set foot in Ireland) first heard the old Irish melody, which itinerant pipers had been playing for a century. He began to write: "Oh, Danny Boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling / From glen to glen and down the mountain side . . . "