Opinion: Marking this Memorial Day holiday with Kate Smith and her ‘God Bless America’


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‘Hello, everybody.’

This being Memorial Day and Memorial Day being a day for remembering, we are going back in time with a special holiday video. Actually, two.

They feature Kate Smith, a plus-size singer who was proud of herself and her big voice. ‘I’m big and I sing,’ she said, ‘and, boy, when I sing, I sing all over.’


Smith’s musical career, marked by a joyful kind of patriotism, spanned more than five decades, until her death in 1986. So popular was this recording, radio and TV artist that the other day, as our colleague Christie D’Zurilla noted over at the Ministry of Gossip, the Postal Service issued a Kate Smith postage stamp.

Smith’s theme song was ‘When the Moon Comes Over the Mountain,’ which she actually helped write. But her lasting fame came from a rousing rendition of Irving Berlin’s ‘God Bless America.’ If you’re like us, on a holiday weekend like this, one listen to this vibrant video is probably insufficient.

Smith once proudly predicted that her full-throated version of this piece of classic American music would be played long after her passing.

In two weeks, it’ll be 24 years. Kinda looks like she was right.

There’s another Kate Smith musical video below for those who want a little bit more.

-- Andrew Malcolm

And may God bless all free men and women in uniform. Happy Holiday. Click here to receive Twitter alerts of each new Ticket item. Follow us @latimestot Or Like our Facebook page right here.