“I Love You California” is the official California Song.
In 1913, Francis Bernard Silverwood (1863-1924), a Los Angeles clothier, trader, and businessman, wrote the California State Song, “I Love You, California.”
Abraham Franklin Frankenstein (1873-1934), then-conductor of the Orpheum Theatre Orchestra, composed the music.
Hatch and Loveland, Music Printers, Los Angeles, California, issued the production in 1913, copyrighted by F.B. Silverwood.
Opera star Mary Garden, who was involved with the Chicago Grand Opera at the time, premiered the song later in 1913.
Related: 50 Fun facts about California
The notices said, “Mary Garden halted Grand Opera to make this California song famous,” virtually guaranteeing the new song’s popularity and success. On Alexandria Hotel stationery, the famed vocalist wrote,
“Mr. Silverwood, I’d want to express my heartfelt condolences, I’m honored to be the first to perform your most lovely song in public, and I wish it a great success in California and throughout the world!
Related: Alabama State song and lyrics
Official California Song – I Love You California
I Love You California
Written by F. B. Silverwood
Composed by A. F. Frankenstein
I love you, California, you’re the greatest state of all
I love you in the winter, summer, spring, and in the fall.
I love your fertile valleys; your dear mountains I adore,
I love your grand old ocean and I love her rugged shore.
I love your redwood forests – love your fields of yellow grain,
I love your summer breezes, and I love your winter rain,
I love you, land of flowers; land of honey, fruit and wine,
I love you, California; you have won this heart of mine.
I love your old gray Missions – love your vineyards stretching far,
I love you, California, with your Golden Gate ajar,
I love your purple sunsets, love your skies of azure blue,
I love you, California; I just can’t help loving you.
I love you, Catalina – you are very dear to me,
I love you, Tamalpais, and I love Yosemite,
I love you, Land of Sunshine, half your beauties are untold,
I loved you in my childhood, and I’ll love you when I’m old.
When the snow-crowned Golden Sierras
Keep their watch o’er the valleys bloom.
It is there I would be in our land by the sea,
Ev’ry breeze bearing rich perfume,
It is here nature gives of her rarest,
It is Home Sweet Home to me.
And I know when I die I shall breathe my last sigh
For my sunny California.
The song’s popularity developed to the point where it was named the official song of expositions held in San Francisco and San Diego in 1915, and it was also played on board the SS Ancon, the first ship to transit the Panama Canal.
The California Legislature declared “I Love You, California” to be the official state song on April 26, 1951.
Summary of California Song
When asked about the state song of California, many people think of Bud De Sylva and Joseph Meyer’s “California, Here I Come.”
Some politicians have attempted to replace “I Love You, California” with other songs over the years, but in 1988, “I Love You, California” became law (section 421.7 of the Government Code).
Related: The official Alaska State song
- Source: State of California, (http://www.state.ca.us), November 20, 2004
- Source: California Legislative Information, (http://www.leginfo.ca.gov), November 20, 2004
- Source: Andrea’s Cantabile-Subito, (http://www.cantabile-subito.de), November 20, 2004
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