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"Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)"
Released 1967
Genre Theme Song
Writer George Bruns
Composer Xavier Atencio

"Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)" is the theme song for the Pirates of the Caribbean attractions at Disney theme parks. The music was written by George Bruns with lyrics by Xavier Atencio. Its origins are loosely derived from Robert Louis Stevenson's sea-shanty "Dead Man's Chest" found in his 1881 novel Treasure Island.


  • 1967 - Song composed for the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction by Bruns and Atencio. (Lyrics as composed by Atencio and Bruns)
  • 1982 - Orange County punk band The Vandals use the song's melody briefly in their song "Pirate's Life", which is about riding the attraction under the influence of LSD
  • 1986 - Singer/songwriter Jimmy Buffett uses the melody as the opening to his single "Take it Back" which was written for the US America's Cup yachting team.
  • 1994 - An instrumental version appears on guitar virtuoso Buckethead's album Giant Robot.
  • 1995 - A version with alternate lyrics was featured in the Beach Party At Walt Disney World video of the Mickey's Fun Songs series.[citation needed]
  • 2003 - The song is featured in the Disney film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. A few bars are sung by young Elizabeth Swann (Lucinda Dryzek). An older Elizabeth (Keira Knightley) later teaches it to Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) while they are marooned on an island. It is sung once again at the end of the film by Captain Jack Sparrow.
  • 2004 - Recorded by The Hellblinki Sextet for their album A Pirate Broadcast.
  • 2006 - A version is sung by the Jonas Brothers in DisneyMania 4 though censored with the lyrics "Drink up me hearties" replaced with "Stand up me hearties".
  • 2007 - A few bars of the song are sung again near the end of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End by Jack Sparrow. A few bars are also sung after the credits by the son of Elizabeth. The instrumentals and dialogue from the attraction are heard as well in the fade to black after the descent off World's End.
  • [Present] - NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a pirate ship in the north endzone of Raymond James Stadium. During football games they will play the song over the loudspeakers and jumbotron, (courtesy of Disney), at which time patrons on the ship throw beads and other prizes into the crowd.

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