The song is the second one in the movie, and vital to the plot. The character Bonejangles (voiced by Danny Elfman) introduces the song with the following lyrics: "What a story it is; a tragic tale of romance, passion and murder most foul". Then, Bonejangles and other skeletons and corpses from the Land of the Dead sing the song with a fast and jazzy melody, and the lyrics explain how Emily (the Corpse Bride) died. A wealthy young woman, famed for her beauty, Emily was seduced by a "mysterious stranger." However, her father forbade her to marry the man due to his poverty. The stranger manipulated Emily into eloping with him; Emily donned her mother's wedding dress, took her jewels and a purse of gold, and went to the churchyard in the middle of the night to meet the man. However, he murdered her, stole her jewels, wealth and hid her body beneath an oak tree. In death, Emily vowed to remain there until her "true love set her free."
The song can be heard on the "Corpse Bride" soundtrack. A notable feature on the soundtrack, on the bonus tracks, a Remains of the Day tribute to the "New Orleans style" jazz combination is played. This was used as source music in the movie.
At the end of the "End Credits" track of the soundtrack, the song's chorus is played. It is not sung, however, in the actual end credits.