And the Liverpool signature tune of "You'll Never Walk Alone" rising from the terraces.
- Kenneth Wolstenholme, BBC 1, FA Cup Final 1965, 1st May 1965 (Liverpool 2 - Leeds Utd 1)
How does a show tune from the Rodgers and Hammerstein 1945 musical "Carousel"; which is sung after someone's husband, falls on a knife and dies after a failed robbery attempt, become the "signature tune" of a football club?
Gerry and the Pacemakers recorded the song in 1963 and it was top of the UK Charts for 4 weeks. It might have been briefly sung on the terraces in 1963 because Gerry and the Pacemakers were a bad from Liverpool but given that another band from Liverpool, namely The Beatles, were the biggest band in the world, that doesn't explain why the song should have lasted this long.
The reason why this song should last this long is because of the very long running radio program Desert Island Discs, in which people are asked to name which records they would want on a desert island with them if they were castaways.
On the 26th of April 1965, the guest on Desert Island Discs on the BBC Home Service (even before it was split into Radios 1, 2, 3 and 4) was none other than Liverpool manager Bill Shankly. He chose "You'll Never Walk Alone" on the program on the Monday¹, then on the Saturday it was being sung at Wembley; when Liverpool won their first FA Cup.
I'm just one of the people who stands on the Kop. They think the same as I do, and I think the same as they do. It's a kind of marriage of people who like each other.
- Bill Shankly.
Now you know.