Song of the Day: James Cagney, “You’re A Grand Old Flag”

June 14 is Flag Day in the United States, commemorating the day in 1777 that the Stars & Stripes were adopted as the national flag. "You’re A Grand Old Flag" was written by George M. Cohan in 1906 for his musical George Washington, Jr. James Cagney played the role of George M. Cohan in the 1942 biopic Yankee Doodle Dandy and sang this song, which was a huge production number. I wasn’t able to find the complete video of the song from the movie, so here’s the audio.

5 thoughts on “Song of the Day: James Cagney, “You’re A Grand Old Flag”

    1. I saw yesterday where Cohan wanted Fred Astaire to play him, but Astaire turned it down, that he didn’t want to have to try and dance like Cohan. Cagney was a better fit, and I don’t think the movie would have been the same without him.


  1. One of my favorite movies. “My mother thanks, my father thanks you, my sister thanks, and I assure you I thank you.” And I love how he dances down the stairs in the end. Love it.


    1. Before seeing “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” I had no idea that Cagney was a song-and-dance man. I always saw him as a tough little Irishman who did well in gangster movies. Boy, was I surprised…


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