Here's to You (song)

"Here's to You" is a song by Ennio Morricone and Joan Baez, released in 1971 as part of the soundtrack of the film Sacco & Vanzetti, directed by Giuliano Montaldo. The lyrics are by Baez herself and the music is by Ennio Morricone. The lyrics are only 4 lines of text, sung over and over.

"Here's to You"
Single by Joan Baez and Ennio Morricone
from the album Sacco & Vanzetti
B-side"The Ballad Of Sacco & Vanzetti - Part 2"
Released1971 (1971)
LabelRCA Victor
Joan Baez singles chronology
"The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down"
"Here's to You"
"Let It Be"


The song is a tribute to two anarchists of Italian origin, Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti who were sentenced to death by a United States court in the 1920s. The consensus of critical opinion has concluded since that the ruling was based on abhorrence to their anarchist political beliefs rather than on any proof that they committed the robbery and murders of which they were accused.[1][2]

The lyrics for Here's to You make use of a statement attributed to Vanzetti by Philip D. Strong, a reporter for the North American Newspaper Alliance who visited him in prison in May 1927, three months before his execution.[3]

If it had not been for these things, I might have lived out my life talking at street corners to scorning men. I might have died, unmarked, unknown, a failure. Now we are not a failure. This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life we could have hoped to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for man's understanding of man as we now do by accident. Our words—our lives—our pains—nothing! The taking of our lives—lives of a good shoemaker and a poor fish peddler—all! That last moment belongs to us—that agony is our triumph.

Use in other mediaEdit

The song is also used in the 1977 quasi-documentary film Deutschland im Herbst, accompanying footage of the 1977 funeral march for Red Army Faction members Andreas Baader, Gudrun Ensslin, and Jan-Carl Raspe who had purportedly committed suicide in prison (see German Autumn). Besides the film Sacco e Vanzetti, the song also appears in the 2004 film The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou.[4][5]. The song also appeared as the opening song in 2014 game Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes produced by Hideo Kojima, as well as the end theme for its predecessor Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots which was also directed by Kojima.


In the United States and worldwide, the song became a veritable human rights movement in the 1970s.[citation needed] In 1972 the German songwriter Franz Josef Degenhardt sang the song under the title "Sacco und Vanzetti" with five verses. The Israeli singer Daliah Lavi sang it in English, French and German.[6] Swedish singer-songwriter Agnetha Fältskog recorded the song in German and released it as a single in 1972, entitled Geh' mit Gott. In 1974 Mireille Mathieu covered the song as "La Marche de Sacco et Vanzetti" on her album "Mireille Mathieu Chante Ennio Morricone". In 1997, Nana Mouskouri interpreted it with Les Enfoirés starting with a classical rendering that develops into a blues song, intermittent with versions of Georges Moustaki in French and finally in English.[citation needed]. In 2011, Bandista covered the song with the name "Selam size" in their album "Daima!".

Hayley Westenra and Ennio Morricone perform Here's To You on the album Paradiso released 2011 and nominated for the Classic Brit Award 2012.

Corsica-based band L'Arcusgi used Here's to You music in their 2011 song Alba Nova (in Corsican A New Dawn).

British composer Harry Gregson-Williams orchestrated a cover of Here's To You featuring vocals by Lisbeth Scott. This version is heard during the end credits of the 2008 game Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots.


Here's to you, Nicola and Bart
Rest forever here in our hearts
The last and final moment is yours
That agony is your triumph.[7]


  1. ^ Montgomery 1960 p. v.
  2. ^ Young & Kaiser 1985 preface.
  3. ^ Sacco, Nicola; Vanzetti, Bartolomeo (2007). The Letters of Sacco and Vanzetti. London: Penguin. p. l. ISBN 978-0-14-310507-7.
  4. ^ "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004) : Soundtracks". Retrieved October 3, 2016.
  5. ^ "Release "The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou" by Various Artists". December 14, 2004. Retrieved October 3, 2016.
  6. ^ Daliah Lavi – Here's To You
  7. ^ Baez, Joan. "Here's to You". Joan Baez Lyrics. Retrieved November 24, 2015.