Question: Do you know how exaggerating the “Oh” in singing of the Star-Spangled Banner at Baltimore Orioles games came to be?
Exaggerating the word “Oh” during the singing of the Star-Spangled Banner has become a tradition at Baltimore Orioles games and other Maryland events, but do you know how it came to be? Since its introduction at games by the “Roar from 34”, led by Wild Bill Hagy and others, in the late 1970s, it has been a tradition at Orioles games for fans to yell out the “Oh” in the line “Oh, say does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave” in “The Star-Spangled Banner”. “The Star-Spangled Banner” has special meaning to Baltimore historically, as it was written during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812 by Francis Scott Key. “O” is not only short for “Oriole”, but the vowel is also a stand-out aspect of the Baltimorean accent.
In addition to hearing the exaggerated “Oh” at Maryland events such as Ravens or Terrapins games, the “Oh!” was also heard during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, when Baltimore native Michael Phelps received one of his gold medals on August 9, 2016.