Oh my darling, Oh my darling Clementine ♫♫♫
Here’s a Thursday Throwback! I remember singing this song on the tire swing growing up as a kid.
Yesterday I picked up a bag of clementines at the market ( I eat so many of them this time of year) and they made me smile and think of this!
So I HAD to do some research…does clementine oranges have something to do with the song? I didn’t think so
This is what Wikipedia had to say
While at first the song seems to be a sad ballad sung by a bereaved lover about the loss of his darling, the daughter of a miner in the 1849 California Gold Rush, as the verses continue it becomes obvious that the song is in fact a tongue-in-cheek parody of a sad ballad. For example, in the second verse we learn that Clementine’s feet are so big that she has to wear boxes instead of shoes (presumably because size 9 shoes are not available); hardly a detail that would be mentioned in a serious romantic ballad. Her “tragic demise” is caused by a splinter in her toe that causes her to fall and drown – clearly a ridiculous accident, but told in a deadpan style. Finally, at the end of the song, the lover forgets his lost love after one kiss from Clementine’s “little sister”.
Gerald Brenan attributes the melody to originally being an old Spanish Ballad in his book South from Granada. It was made popular by Mexican miners during the Gold Rush. It is unclear when, where and by whom the song was first recorded in English for others to hear but the first version to reach the Billboard charts was that by Bing Crosby in 1941 when it briefly touched the No. 20 spot.
And I also found some other interesting facts!
- An instrumental version was used in the movie Back to the Future Part III.
- The song plays during the opening credits for the John Ford movie My Darling Clementine, with Henry Fonda. It also runs as a background score all through the movie.
- It is used as background music in another John Ford film, The Grapes of Wrath, also starring Henry Fonda.
- A North Korean musical movie from 1972, The Flower Girl, used the song’s melody as its main theme.
- Scooby Doo whistled the tune in the episode featuring the Miner 49’er.
- A birthday version with Chinese lyrics is featured in the 2001 movie Quitting.
- The melody is used in “Xin Nian Hao Ya”, a Chinese New Year song. Ahh…yes…the Chinese New Year song, I knew it sounded familiar!!!
So it’s kinda funny…nothing to do at all with clementine’s.
And in case you don’t remember the song. Check this out while you’re enjoying some clementines today.