Eyes of Texas- UT Austin Anthem

Main Content:

I: Informant, M: Me

I: So the Longhorns [University of Texas Austin] founded in 1881, have a song called the Eyes of Texas which was originally more of a baudry song sang by crooners and country folk. We adopted that and we sing that at the end of every game [football]. Win or Lose, when everybody is exiting the stadium the Longhorns put their horns up, this is the symbol for the horns [I love you in American Sign Language but thumb is wrapped in on top of ring and middle finger-in order to make the horns of a Longhorn] and we sing “The eyes of Texas are upon you, all the live long day” and at the end of it, it says “the eyes of Texas are upon you, til Gabriel blows his horn” 

M: Uh-huh

I: Gabriel is the angel in heaven and is the god of war, the angel of war. So we chant that at the end of every game to send everybody off the field. There is a whole tradition behind that, that is carried only by the Texas Longhorns

Context: My informant went to the University of Texas Austin and was a proud Longhorns fan and football supporter. Thus, he went to many games and participated in this custom.

Analysis: An important distinction to make here is that the song, “The Eyes of Texas” is not the folklore here. That song is copyrighted ‘authored literature.’ What is folklore however is the practice of using that song along with hand gestures at the very end of each football game. The performance of the song with the Longhorns ‘sign’ and rest of the supporters is the actual piece of folklore. This displays how authored literature can be taken and made a part of folklore. This performance allows for a display of pride in their identity as Longhorns, especially that this is done no matter if they win or lose to send their players off the fields. It’s as if to say, we support you and are proud no matter what.