The strains of Kate Smith’s version of “God Bless America” no longer echo throughout Yankee Stadium during the seventh-inning stretch because of hints of racism in the late singer’s past.
This season, the Yankees replaced Smith’s recorded rendition, one they had used for 18 years, with other versions of the song. , the change was made after Yankees officials were alerted that Smith previously sang songs with racist lyrics.
Smith, who died in 1986, is best known in the sports world as a good-luck charm for the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers — as her singing of “God Bless America” before games frequently coincided with Flyers victories.
However, Smith had a controversial top-20 hit in 1931 titled “That’s Why Darkies Were Born” and