Published at Wednesday, December 13th 2017. by Alison Bolton in Happy Bitrthday.
This all came to a head when Irving Berlins musical As Thousands Cheer used and didnot credit the Good Morning to All melody, the third hill sister called Jessica who administered the copyrights for her sisters filed a suit, and by being able to demonstrate concrete and undeniable similarities between Good Morning to All and Happy Birthday to You in a court of law she was able to obtain the copyright for Happy Birthday to You for her sisters as well.
I guess it all begins with the night before my birthday. As long as I can remember, I go to bed that night expecting to wake up changed, transformed, new. Only the most excellent dreams come to me in my sleep, and the next day, the dreams are fulfilled. After that, I expect everyone to be celebrating with me; everyone circling around me showering me with confetti, so the whole day, I feel like a Queen, but I not that want people bowing to me. I think the sun rose today, just for me. It continues to shine and sparkle as though it is winking at me and saying, you are a Queen today, and yes, I will make you feel like one. I rose just for you. I am shining, because I know that will make your day that much more special. I am yellow today, because that is your favorite color. Yes, you are special, and today is special, because it is YOUR day! As I go about my day, I want people to glow and smile, knowing it is my day, and doing whatever they can to make it more special for me. Someone has come in my house and there are flowers and balloons everywhere, what a great surprise. I wonder how this occurred without my knowledge. What a fabulous person who did this! I get calls from people whom I talk to very occasionally, but for some reason, every year, they remember my birthday... how thoughtful of them. They remember my birthday, as they know I remember theirs. Everyone wants to take me out and to do fun things that you do not do on a regular basis, go to a fancy restaurant, have adventures, and participate in spectacular events. The day is most joyful and the possibilities are limitless. I arrive at my house to find a surprise birthday party waiting for me. All of my friends are celebrating with me, having a grand time. In walks the man of my dreams... the guy Ive waited my whole life for. I know it before I even meet him. He is there, and there is an instant spark and bond, yet he does not consume all my time or thoughts. I am off in the next moment, knowing he and I will meet up later, for we have the rest of our lives. I am mingling with all of my friends, who have heard so much about each other but never met. They meet, and everyone gets along fabulously. Toasts are shared, as are letters from peoples whose lives I have impacted. It is the wee hours of the morning, and the night is coming to an end. I finally get to bed exhausted from the most spectacular day known to anyone. I know my dreams tonight will be filled with my reality from the day. I fall sleep just to wake up to...
If you are putting together a birthday party in your home, decorate the place to the nines, with intertwined rolls of crepe paper hanging from the rafters, and with three-foot high letters spelling out Happy Birthday! stretched across the room. Decorate the party table with colorful paper plate and cups and napkins, just for the sheer cheerfulness of the things.
Happy Birthday, dear (insert name here),
Yet for our family and friends, for our own smaller, private worlds of kinship and friendship, our presence can be felt and our absence missed. Thus we celebrate the anniversaries of our own and of our loved one is births with very personal celebrations. We may just spend time together on those special days, or perhaps renew our bonds with a larger circle of relations and acquaintances. Either way, though, we like to just plain have a good time on birthdays, and why not? The world finds the time to mark all manner of occasions, both big and small, both global and national, so why not mark our personal milestones as well?
So there you have it, who would have thought that a song intended as a simple greeting would turn into a worldwide phenomenon.