On the Bay of Biscay

On the Bay of Biscay is a World War I-era song published in either 1918 or 1919; sources differ on the year.[1][2] Lyrics and music were written by Harold Robe. The song was published by A.J. Stansy Music Co. in New York, New York. Artist Albert Wilfred Barbelle provided the art for the sheet music. There are two versions of the cover, but both are similar. In one, a soldier is leaning against a tree, with his rifle beside him. The moon is shining over the water. In another edition, there is the sun instead of the moon, hovering above the water.[1] The song was written for both voice and piano.[2]

"On the Bay of Biscay"
On the bay of biscay cover.jpg
Sheet music cover of On the Bay of Biscay
LabelA.J. Stansy Music Co.
Songwriter(s)Harold Robe

The lyrics show support for France as evidenced in the first verse: "Sister France, we all are for you." Within the chorus, there is a carefree tone. The Bay of Biscay is mentioned as a place where worries and cares are "a million miles'" from reach.[2]

The sheet music can be found at the Library of Congress and Pritzker Military Museum & Library.[3]


  1. ^ a b Parker, Bernard S. (2007). World War I Sheet Music. Vol. 2. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc. p. 479. ISBN 978-0-7864-2799-4.
  2. ^ a b c "On the bay of biscay". Library of Congress. Library of Congress. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
  3. ^ "On the Bay of Biscay". OCLC World Cat. OCLC World Cat. Retrieved 5 January 2016.