South of the Border (1939 song)

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"South of the Border" is a popular song describing a trip to Mexico, written by Jimmy Kennedy and Michael Carr and published in 1939 for the film of the same name starring country star Gene Autry.[1]

In the lyrics, a man looks back with regret and pain for having lied to the woman he can't forget ("...and now as I wander, my thoughts ever stray...") and returned for too late, just as she was preparing for marriage. The lyric is in juxtaposition with the music, which swings with syncopated joy.[citation needed]

The song was a hit in 1939 for Shep Fields, vocal by Hal Derwin. It has been recorded by many artists, but the best-known versions are by Gene Autry and Frank Sinatra (1953). Irish-born boxing tenor Jack Doyle recorded it with his then wife, Mexican American movie actress Movita Castaneda. Perry Como recorded the song for his 1957 album We Get Letters. Rockabilly artist Carl Mann recorded the song in October 1959 for Sun Records, which was released on the Phillips International label in 1960. The song was recorded in August 1961 by Patsy Cline for her album Patsy Cline Showcase and appears on Herb Alpert's Tijuana Brass album South of the Border (1964). The Shadows did an instrumental version on their 1962 album Out of the Shadows.

Members of the Western Writers of America chose it as one of the Top 100 Western songs of all time.[2]


  1. ^ Soundtrack: South of the Border (1939). - IMDb.
  2. ^ Western Writers of America (2010). "The Top 100 Western Songs". American Cowboy. Archived from the original on 10 August 2014.