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Music – 1986 – John Davies Of The Indianapolis Opera Company Sings Back Home In Indiana At The Start Of The Indy 500


“(Back Home Again in) Indiana” is a song composed by James F. Hanley….with lyrics by Ballard MacDonald….that was published in January 1917. Although it is not the state song of Indiana….which is “On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away”….it is perhaps the best-known song that pays tribute to the Hoosier state.

Since 1946, “Back Home Again in Indiana” has been performed during pre-race ceremonies before the Indianapolis 500….as seen in this video herewith by Mr. John Davies Of The Indianapolis Opera.  From 1972 to 2014 the song has been performed most often by Jim Nabors of TV’s Gomer Pyle fame….who has  admitted to having the song’s lyrics written on his hand during his inaugural performance….as his versions occasionally have altered several of the words…..as the vocals are also typically supported by the Purdue All-American Marching Band. 

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