Golden Gate – 1928

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1928_Golden Gate_sheet_1

Golden Gate (Dave Dreyer, Joseph Meyer, Billy Rose, Al Jolson) — The lyric borrows one line of verse (“Open up your Golden Gate”) from the 1924 hit song California, Here I Come, which was co-written by Joseph Meyer and Buddy DeSylva. Al Jolson’s contribution to the writing of the song, as is typically the case where he is credited, is questionable. It’s likely, however, that he added the imitative vocalized sounds of a horn (da-da-da-da) and drum (boom-boom) to the lyric.

Al Jolson – recorded on 13 January 1928; issued on the 78 rpm single Brunswick 3775, b/w Four Walls (Dreyer, Rose, Jolson)

The provider of the following video indicates that the song was introduced in the musical Boom Boom in 1927. That might be true, but IBDb (Internet Broadway Database) does not include it in the list of that show’s opening night songs. It was used in the film The Singing Fool (1928), and most sites seem to recognize Jolson’s performance of the song in that film as its introduction.

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Herb Wiedoeft & his Orchestra with vocals by Clyde Lucas & Leon Lucas1928

Info from the video provider:

Herb Wiedoeft, brother of famous saxophonist Rudy Wiedoeft, led his orchestra since 1923 but died following a car accident in Medford Oregon in May 1928. After Wiedoeft’s death trombonist Jesse Stafford took over the band and released another 13 sides on Brunswick records under the name of the Jessie Stafford Orchestra. Other recordings by Herb Wiedoeft’s band were released under the name of Herb Wiedoeft’s Cinderella Roof Orchestra (from the Cinderella Roof at the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles, 506 South Grand Avenue) and Herb Wiedoeft’s Famous Orchestra.

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GOLDEN GATE — lyric sung by Al Jolson, 1928

You are talking of Heaven
When you talk of the West
And as a sample of Heaven
California is best, da-da-da-da
I’m getting tired of the rain and snow
My weary brain is cryin’ Westward Ho!
Train pulls out at eleven
For that rose-covered nest

Oh, Golden Gate, da-da-da-da, I’m comin’ to ya
Golden Gate, da-da-da-da, sing Hallelujah
I’ll live in the sun, boom-boom, love in the moon
Where every month is June
A little sun-kissed blonde, da-da-da, is comin’ my way
Just beyond that Lincoln Highway
I’m goin’ strong now, I won’t be long now
Open up that Golden Gate

(instrumental break)

Mountains and mountains, rivers and fountains
Rocks that are aged and then worn
Acre after acre of the richest soil
A hundred million trillion barrels of oil
Prairies and prairies, cattle and dairies
Under a heaven of blue
And right at the tail, the end of the trail
Thousands of boats sailing through…that

Golden Gate, da-da-da-da, I’m comin’ to ya
(Come on, get hot!)
Golden Gate, da-da-da-da, sing Hallelujah
I’ll live in the sun, ah, love in the moon
Where every, where every month, every month is June
A little sun-kissed blonde, da-da da-da, is comin’ my way
Right beyond that Lincoln Highway
I’m goin’ strong now, it won’t be long now
Open up that Golden, Golden Gate

Lyric adapted from a January 2006 transcription by Bill Huntley & Mel Priddle, revised by doc (yours truly) November 2012. The 2006 transcription could be from the soundtrack recording from the film The Singing Fool (1928) which might account for several minor differences between the words sung by Jolson in the above recording and the words heard by Huntley & Priddle.

In the above recording, the first time the line “Where every month is June” is sung Jolson appears to mispronounce “month” as “mirth.”

Golden Gate International Exposition, 1939-40, Treasure Island (1)

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Golden Gate International Exposition, 1939-40, Treasure Island (2)

Golden Gate International Exposition (1939 and 1940) was held at San Francisco, California to celebrate two newly-built bridges. The San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge was dedicated in 1936 and the Golden Gate Bridge was dedicated in 1937. The exposition was opened initially from February 18, 1939 through October 29, 1939. It opened again from May 25, 1940 through September 29, 1940. The Exposition was held on Treasure Island, a completely flat, artificial island attached to Yerba Buena Island, near where the Oakland span and the San Francisco span of the Bay Bridge join. — from the Wikipedia article

Benny Goodman Orchestra_1939_Golden Gate Expo_1_f10

(above) Under the title “Golden Gate Exposition 1939,” the source of the photo, Shorpy.com, says:

Great photo taken by a sailor from the USS California visiting San Francisco in 1939 of Benny Goodman and his band. Fletcher Henderson on the piano, Nick Fatool on drums and Louise Tobin sitting next to the piano

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