Tipperary How the song came to be

In 1934, a letter from Jack Judge to a Mr. Whittaker, a shopkeeper in Stalybridge, Cheshire, came to light and told how the song came to be written.

Just after midnight on the 31st of January 1912, Judge emerged from a club in stalybridge with his friends, having bet one Frank Newberry five shillings that he could write compose and sing a new song that day. On the way to his lodgings in Portland Place, he overheard one man say to another ‘it’s a long way to . . . . . “

The phrase stuck in his mind and he added: Tipperary”. Next morning after breakfast, he walked to the New market Inn, sat down and wrote the lyrics. Later he hummed the tune to Horace Vernon, the musical director of the Grand Music Hall, opposite the pub and where he, (Judge) was appearing. Vernon hastily wrote the score and jack sang his song that night and won his bet.

Judge often sang his song at his various engagements around the country, as did Florrie Forde, and it was sung to the troops on manoeuvres in Ireland and in the Isle of Man. Judge also had a regular date to entertain the 7th. Battalion of the Worcestershire regiment so the song was well known by the troops before the start of World War 1: and when a music publisher named Bert Feldman bought the score from Judge and arranged for the sale of sheet music, the song reached the peak of it’s fame.

It later transpired that Judge and Harry Williams had previously written a similar song called “Connemara” and in fact Judge is believed to have paid Williams some royalties.

Some song books credit them both with song.

WORDS BY JACK JUDGE

MUSIC BY HORACE VERNON

UP TO MIGHTY LONDON CAME AN IRISHMAN ONE DAY,

AS THE STREETS WERE PAVED WITH GOLD, SURE EVERY ONE WAS GAY;

SINGING SONGS OF PICCADILLY, STRAND AND LEICESTER SQUARE,

TILL PADDY GOT EXCITED THEN HE SHOUTED TO THEM THERE.

CHORUS;

IT’S A LONG WAY TO TIPPERARY,

IT’S A LONG WAY TO GO.

IT’S A LONG WAY TO TIPPERARY,

TO THE SWEETEST GIRL I KNOW!

GOODBYE PICCADILLY,

FAREWELL LEICESTER SQUARE,

IT’S A LONG WAY TO TIPPERARY,

BUT MY HEART’S RIGHT THERE! IT’S THERE.

PADDY WROTE A LETTER TO HIS IRISH MOLLY O,

SAYING,”SHOULD YOU NOT RECEIVE IT, WRITE AND LET ME KNOW!

IF I MAKE MISTAKES IN SPELLING, MOLLY DEAR”, SAID HE,

“REMEMBER IT’S THE PEN THAT’S BAD, DON’T LAY THE BLAME ON ME”.

CHORUS;

MOLLY WROTE A NEAT REPLY TO IRISH PADDY O,

SAYING, “MIKE MALONEY WANTS TO MARRY ME, AND SO

LEAVE THE STRAND AND PICCADILLY, OR YOU’LL BE TO BLAME,

FOR LOVE HAS FAIRLY DROVE ME SILLY-HOPING YOU’RE THE SAME.

CHORUS;

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#JackJudge #ItsaLongWaytoTipperary

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