Former Texas Longhorn Brian Jones believes Texas fans and players can transform song into 'an anthem of accountability. The Eyes of Texas are upon you, ’til Gabriel blows his horn. The crowd followed along, listened, clapped, danced, and occasionally sang. Johnson contacted the composer in Detroit for permission to use the music, while Sinclair re-fashioned the words and extended the song to six verses. Texas athletic director Chris Del Conte said Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, he expects players to “stand together as a unified group” to show appreciation for the school and fans during the playing of the school song “The Eyes of Texas” after games, but didn't say what will happen if they refuse. University of Texas fans stood and sang the school’s song, The Eyes of Texas, Saturday, despite the band’s refusal to play the song over claims that it is racist. Favorite Answer. Less than a month after the minstrel show, on June 10th, spring commencement ceremonies were held in the auditorium of Old Main. Again I seem to great him Ivory black and crimson lac, and eyes of every hue. Among the songs UT students sang were well-known college favorites, among them Fair Harvard, and Princeton’s Old Nassau. Most were in the 1,500 seat auditorium of the old Main Building, but in late March, Johnson wanted to try something new, and introduced a series of “Promenade Concerts.” Starting at 7p.m., the band strolled along the walk that circled the campus and played a variety of overtures, waltzes, and new marches by a popular composer named Sousa. The song was written to the tune of "I've Been Working on the Railroad", which disparaged black laborers who worked in railroad and levee camps in the 19th century. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Do not think you can escape them At night or early in the morn --The Eyes of Texas are upon you Til Gabriel blows his horn. For many years, thousands of Texans of all backgrounds and generations […] This statue stands on the corner of E 23rd Street and San Jacinto Street, across the street from Darrel K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on the University of Texas … UT students and administration were surprised in the late 1970s to hear that a man living in Oregon was claiming the ownership of the "Eyes of Texas" and collecting on his version of the composition. ( Log Out /  As the Big 12 Conference ramps up its 25th football season, it's a good time to look back through the league’s illustrious history and identify the best football players ever to suit up. “The Eyes of Texas” is nearly as old as the University of Texas itself. As the work progressed, the two decided to make the song a spoof on UT President William Prather, and Sinclair made some significant revisions to the words. The eyes of Texas are upon you. Above: The University of Texas campus in the early 1900s. Hall,” the University’s first residence hall for men – stayed up all night, and finished the verses for Jolly Students of the ‘Varsity. (The earliest recording of The Eyes of Texas was made in 1928 by the Longhorn Band. “And now, young ladies and gentlemen, in the words of your own poet, remember that the eyes of Texas are upon you.” The seniors gave Prather a standing ovation, and the University of Texas had a song it could call its own. And the proud and sovereign State of Texas, feels, too, that the old song that told you the eyes of Texas are upon you, all the livelong day, might have had some updating. He’d attended Washington College in Virginia (now Washington and Lee University), and often heard its president at the time, Robert E. Lee, tell his students, “Remember, the eyes of the South are upon you,” as he reminded them that they were the leaders of the future. Do not think you can escape them At night or early in the morn --The Eyes of Texas are upon you Til Gabriel blows his horn. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. The eyes of Texas are upon you, all the livelong day. The song was written in 1903 in response to the campus desire for a UT song. The eyes of Texas are upon you. Before Johnson read the last line, he knew Sinclair had produced something for the University that would last long after their time as students had passed. Former Doak Walker Award winner D'Onta Foreman is looking to catch on with his third NFL team, The NCAA will vote on the recommendation on Friday. The Eyes of Texas are upon you, All the livelong day. Longhorns from all sports have come out with a unified message, demanding changes for the upcoming Fall semester including the replacement of ‘The Eyes of Texas’ spirit song. The eyes of Texas are upon you All the live long days The eyes of Texas are upon you And you cannot get away. Here's an excerpt from his recent column: To mark the moment of the song’s transformation from school song to anthem of accountability, I hope the team will not only sing along with their “Hook ’em Horns” hand sign, but do so kneeling, signaling not submission but instead taking a reverential pose to convey their embrace of the solemnity of the moment. One of the most talked-about subjects through these discussions has been the song "The Eyes of Texas". But Johnson felt the song still lacked a distinct Texas identity. Gabriel's horn also makes an appearance in The Eyes of Texas (1903) in which it signifies the rapture. Sinclair was an editor of the Cactus yearbook, a regular contributor to the University of Texas Literary Magazine, and was widely known as the campus poet. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Sing me a song of Prexy, of days long since gone by. A controversy over “The Eyes of Texas… He first contacted alumni known to have literary talent, and hoped to recruit a volunteer to write a UT song, but received only polite refusals. With President Prather sitting in the audience, four students: Jim Kivlehen, Ralph Porter, Bill Smith and Jim Cannon, accompanied by John Lang Sinclair on the banjo, took the stage and unleashed Sinclair’s creation: I once did know a President, a way down South, in Texas. The Eyes of Texas are upon you, you cannot get away. And the UT track team won the All-South meet in Atlanta, it’s first victory in a regional competition. Leading off the show was an overture by the Varsity Band, followed by songs titled Oh, The Lovely Girls, Old Kentucky Home and The Castle on the Nile performed by the University Chorus or student soloists. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. The All-Southwest Conference performer is currently a radio host and analyst for CBS Sports. He saw the eyes of Texas. The speech was so well received, Prather decided to get all he could of it and ended most of his talks with the same phrase. The students, of course, picked up on it immediately, and it became an ongoing campus joke to chant, “Remember, the eyes of Texas are upon you!” at sporting events, concerts, and just about every social occasion. To get the latest Texas Longhorns Posts posts as they happen, join the Texas Longhorns Community by clicking “Follow” at the top right corner of the page (mobile users can click the notifications bell icon), and follow Texas Longhorns SI on Twitter @LonghornsSI. Do not think you can escape them At night or early in the morn - The Eyes of Texas are upon you Til Gabriel blows his horn. With dispute still raging over “The Eyes of Texas,” the University of Texas band won’t play at the school’s final two home football games against West Virginia and Iowa State. A Varsity minstrel show was scheduled for Wednesday evening, May 12, 1903, in the Hancock Opera House on West Sixth Street, and was packed with music, dances, skits, and even a tumbling act. Last week, the school band sponsored a poll of members and found that about half were against the school’s more than 100-year-old song because of its supposed ties to minstrel performances during the early 1900s. Many have weighed in with suggestions to help make the song more inclusive. TM This Week The stories you want, in one weekly newsletter. “This promises to be the most popular entertainment ever provided for ‘Varsity people,” declared the Texan student newspaper. We are fond of saying that “what starts at the University of Texas changes the world,” and we can prove it with this move toward a new era of justice and equality for all.I’ve always loved the song’s ending, when we shout, “The Eyes of Texas are upon you until Gabriel blows his horn.” In the coming days, when we sing that together, we will be reminded that a struggle as old as humanity can be brought to a heavenly conclusion on earth in our lifetimes. When Prather was tapped to be president, regent Russell Cowart wrote to his colleague, Tom Henderson, about the possibility of an inauguration ceremony for Prather: “I can see no reason why there should be any inauguration … I am afraid that the Dear Col. might inflict not only us but a suffering audience with a speech like the one he paralyzed us with when he came and was notified of his selection [to be president].” A ceremony was held anyway, and Prather concluded his talk with a plea to the students, “Always remember, the eyes of Texas are upon you.”. A roving party, the concerts were a great success. The Eyes of Texas' is the alma mater of the University of Texas at Austin.It is set to the tune of I've Been Working on the Railroad.The song was written in 1903 and lyrics were intended to poke fun at University President Colonel Prather. Former Texas Longhorn Brian Jones believes Texas fans and players can transform song into 'an anthem of accountability. He knew that, at the least, the students were listening to him. Do not think you can escape them From night till early in the morn The eyes of Texas are upon you Till Gabriel blows his horn. (Photo at left.) ( Log Out /  HOUSTON — "The Eyes of Texas," a University of Texas song meant to inspire school pride, is facing renewed criticism after student-athletes requested it … Again I seek to greet him, and hear his kind reply. Not one to give up easily, Johnson turned to his fellow students, specifically to fellow band member John Lang Sinclair. Sing me a song of Prexy, of days long since gone by. Texas' next home game is scheduled for Oct. 24 against Baylor. The Jolly Students was introduced at a concert in late May, and was instantly popular with UT students. Former Longhorn Brian Jones is the latest to do so. At midnight they’re with you all the way, the sleepless eyes of Texas. Do not think you can escape them, at night or early in the morn – The Eyes of Texas are upon you, ’til Gabriel blows his horn. Smiles of gracious welcome, before my memory rise, Again I hear him say to me, “Remember Texas’ Eyes.”. They’re with you all the way. That will be a legacy that any old athlete, any human would be proud to have. Set to the tune “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad,” Johnson and Sinclair prepared the song so it could be performed by the Varsity Quartet at its next show in May. AUSTIN, Texas -- Losing football games is one thing at the University of Texas. University of Texas vice president and athletic director Chris Del Conte was excited to see a live football scrimmage on Saturday for the first time since December. Flashback: Students at the University of Texas called for the school to drop the song over the summer during the Black Lives Matter protests.. Between classes, he played tuba in the Varsity Band, directed the University Chorus, and arranged for concerts on the Forty Acres. The Eyes of Texas are upon you, all the livelong day. On it, scribbled in pencil with scratched-out lines and corrections, was the first draft of a poem: They watch above you all the day, the bright blue eyes of Texas. We are fans and alumni of the University of Texas at Austin who are disappointed with "The Eyes of Texas" being used to divide us when the song and its singing should be a moment of unity for us all. As the Big 12 Conference ramps up its 25th football season, it seems like a good time to look back through the league’s illustrious history and identify the best football players ever to suit up. As athletes across the country continue to find their voice, speaking out against social and racial injustice across the country, the University of Texas has become a particular catalyst for such changes. He recently penned a column for the Houston Chronicle with an idea to help turn the school's traditional song into "an anthem of accountability". While the song evolved beyond its problematic origins, it's still a sore subject for some in the University of Texas family. One evening in early May 1902, Johnson and Sinclair were returning from a comic opera performance in downtown Austin, when they stopped at Jacoby’s Beer Garden, just south of the campus on Lavaca Street. But the University had no song to call its own, for years a sore topic regularly discussed in the student newspapers. By the end of the song, the audience was pounding the floor and demanding so many encores that members of the quartet grew hoarse and had to sing We’re Tired Out. In Marc Connelly 's play based on spirituals, The Green Pastures (1930), Gabriel has his beloved trumpet constantly with him, and the Lord has to warn him not to blow it too soon. The eyes of Texas are upon you All the live long days The eyes of Texas are upon you And you cannot get away A challenge to the hallowed school song is quite another. 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. Listen to it – as well as the first recording of “Texas Fight” – here.). The Eyes of Texas are upon you, You cannot get away. 1928: First Recording of The Eyes of Texas. Again I seek to greet him, and hear his kind reply. Update 06/17: This article has been amended to reflect that “The Eyes of Texas” is UT’s alma mater and an unofficial fight song. The chorus was: For we are jolly students of the ‘Varsity, the ‘Varsity! They watch you in the early dawn. The following spring he prodded Sinclair to try again. In the 1900s, the term ” ‘varsity ” was a contraction of the word “university.” In the Lone Star State, students who attended ‘Varsity, were understood to be enrolled in the University of Texas, while those studying at the “College” were in the A&M College of Texas (as Texas A&M was then called). Some put up the traditional “Hook’em Horns” hand sign, … ( Log Out /  Gabriel is the 8th seated tuba player in the Texas band who doesn’t blow his horn until he gets drunk at about the middle of the 4th quarter. Johnson brought up the topic of a UT song once again and, perhaps with the help of Mr. Jacoby’s ales, Sinclair finally acquiesced to Johnson’s requests. Though not a composer himself, Johnson decided to find a way to create one. We’ll show the chief of all policemen who we are. The university said it would improve Black student enrollment and recruitment, but would keep the song because of history and context, according to the Texas Tribune. Sing me a song of Texas, and Texas’ myriad eyes. We are asking the University of Texas administration to keep "The Eyes of Texas" as UT's alma mater Proceeds from the show would pay for the University Track team to attend the All-South Track and Field Competition in Atlanta. Even so, "The Eyes of Texas" continued to be recognized as the official song of the University of Texas at Austin and at times was mistakenly identified as the state song. The Eyes of Texas are upon you, All the livelong day. Music (and inspiration) came from the nationally-known tune, Jolly Students of America. The University of Texas band plans to boycott today's football game against Baylor. The school song was written in 1903 and is played before and after every UT sporting event. Prather particularly liked this phrase, though apparently his talent for public speaking wasn’t popular with everyone. The Texas version of the song was written in 1903 and in its public debut came from white singers performing the song in blackface. Countless as the bright stars, that fill the midnight skies. Sinclair resisted at first, but Johnson continued to pester. As more have discovered the song's questionable origins. Texas alum Matthew McConaughey: I say don’t change ‘The Eyes of Texas’, just change the way the eyes see The Oscar-winning actor believes the school tradition can be preserved. The idea of a stadium full of Longhorns players and fans kneeling together is almost too moving to imagine.With that new underpinning, the song will take on even greater meaning, whether it is sung at sporting events or Longhorns family reunions and weddings. The song the Longhorn band usually plays, Eyes OF Texas, has racist roots that are fracturing the campus. Sing me a song of Prexy, Of days long since gone by. Sam Ehlinger has already cemented a spot in Texas Longhorns lore, but does he need a Big 12 Championship ring to complete his resume? The Eyes of Texas are upon you, All the live long day. Read more about "The Eyes of Texas" Texas Longhorns offensive lineman Willie Tyler will not participate in the 2020 season. Prather, though, had the last laugh. Composition Licence: "The Eyes of Texas" is the alma mater of the University of Texas at Austin. Sing me a song of Prexy, Of days long since gone by. When from the eastern skies the high light, tells that the night is gone. Till Gabriel blows his horn. Do not think you can escape them, at night or early in the morn –. University of Texas football players, many of whom have raised concerns over using “The Eyes of Texas” as the school song, have been told by the … The Eyes of Texas are upon you, You can not get away. In the chorus, the Avenue referred to Congress Avenue downtown. 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