Camp song book

COVID preparedness for singing: The state and county now allow singing with masks on, if outdoors and socially distanced, and if people do not sing at the top of their voices. We will have a PA system for our song leaders so they can sing quietly (the campers already sing quietly, so no problem there.)

Here are the camp songs for 2021. Since we have three weeks of camp this year, we’re adding LOTS of new songs. Whenever possible, we’ve provided links to videos so you can learn the songs ahead of time if you want. We want to include both our own Ecojustice Camp songs, plus songs representing a diversity of voices, including BIPOC songwriters.

Some of these songs are aimed at younger campers, and some have more difficult lyrics and are aimed at older campers — learn the ones you like best! (Lyrics are provided here for educational purposes. Copyright remains with copyright holders.)


THE ADAPTATION SONG
Dan Harper / Ecojustice Camp (2017)

I’m an otter, I’m an otter, I am a Sea Otter,
Swim among the kelp and hunt sea urchins underwater,
I use rocks as tools to open up my shellfish fodder,
I’m an otter, I’m an otter, I am a Sea Otter.

Chorus:
Animals adapt to their environments
So they can meet all of life’s requirements.
What they eat and where they live and when they take a nap:
There are many ways that animals adapt.

I’m a fox, I’m a fox, yes, I’m a Gray Fox,
Make my den in caves or trees or in among rocks,
I am good at climbing trees and balancing on logs,
I’m a fox, I’m a fox, I am a Gray Fox.

I’m a falcon, I’m a falcon, I’m a Peregrine Falcon,
I’m the fastest animal, I hunt with my sharp talons,
I’m the one maintaining pigeon population balance,
I’m a falcon, I’m a falcon, I’m a Peregrine Falcon.


ADOBE CREEK
Dan Harper / Ecojustice Camp (2017)

1. ’Twas in Ohlone people’s time
Adobe Creek flowed free;
With willow trees its banks were lined,
A pretty sight to see.

Chorus:
Oh, from Black Mountain, to the bay,
Lit by the golden sun,
Adobe Creek flows gently down,
Long may its waters run.

2. When European settlers came
Their thirsty cattle drank
The cooling waters, and then grazed
Along the grassy banks.

3. Then farmers planted fields so green
Beneath the sun so bright,
And all their crops grew like a dream:
A land of heart’s delight.

4. Soon houses spread along the creek,
But came a dreadful flood;
Its banks were lined with with grey concrete:
No more the living mud.

5. Down from the peaks where Live Oaks grow,
Past houses and highways:
For fourteen miles the waters flow
Until they reach the bay.


ALL GOD’S CRITTERS GOT A PLACE IN THE CHOIR
Bill Staines

1. Listen to the bass, it’s the one in the bottom
Where the bullfrog croaks and the hippopotamus
Moans and groans with a big to-do,
And the old cow just goes moo.

Dogs and cats, they take up the middle,
Where the honeybee hums and the crickets fiddle,
The donkey brays and the pony neighs,
The old coyote howls.

CHORUS:
All God’s critters got a place in the choir,
Some sing low, and some sing higher,
Some sing out loud on the telephone wire,
And some just clap their hands or paws, or anything they got, now.

2. Listen to the top where the little birds sing,
On the melody with their high notes ringing,
The hoot owl hollers over everything,
The jay bird disagrees.

Singing in the night time, singing in the day,
The little duck quacks and is on his way,
The possum ain’t got much to say,
The porcupine talks to himself.

3. It’s a simple song of living and it’s sung everywhere,
By the ox and the fox and the grizzly bear,
The grumpy alligator and the hawk above,
The sly raccoon, and the turtle dove.

Here are Annie Patterson and Peter Blood singing this song.


ARAGON MILL
Si Kahn
1. At the east end of town, at the foot of the hill,
Stands a chimney so tall that says Aragon Mill.
But there’s no smoke at all coming out of the stack,
The mill has shut down, and it ain’t coming back.

Chorus:
And the only tune I hear
Is the sound of the wind
As it blows through the town,
Weave and spin, weave and spin.

2. Now I’m too old to change, and I’m too young to die,
And there’s no place to go for my old man and I.
There’s no children at all in the narrow empty streets
Now the looms have all gone, it’s so quiet I can’t sleep.

3. Now the mill has shut down, it’s the only life I know,
Tell me where will I go, tell me where will I go.

“Aragon Mill” has been adopted by people around the world, any place where mills closed and people lost their jobs. In Ireland, they sing “Belfast Mill,” calling it an old Irish song — here’s Rachel Hillary singing the Irish version. And — here’s Otto Groote singing a German version.


BIG YELLOW TAXI
Joni Mitchell

1. They paved paradise,
Put up a parking lot
With a pink hotel,
A boutique, and a swinging hot spot

Chorus:
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone
They paved paradise, put up a parking lot.

2. They took all the trees,
Put ’em in a tree museum.
And they charged all the people
A dollar and a half just to see ’em.

3. Hey farmer, farmer,
Put away that DDT, now.
Give me spots on my apples
But leave me the birds and the bees (please!)

4. Late last night,
I heard the screen door slam.
And a big yellow taxi
Took away my old man.

Here’s a great performance by Yola.


BOUGHT ME A CAT
Traditional

This is one of those songs where you keep adding animals. EacH verse always starts like this:

Bought me a _______, the ______ pleased me, fed my ______ under yonder tree.

Here’s every verse that we sing:
Horse went neigh,
Cow went moo,
Sheep went baa,
Dog went boo,
Goose went qua,
Duck went slishy-sloshy,
Hen went chipsy-chopsy,
Cat went fiddle-i-fee, fiddle-i-fee.

Here’s feminist singer-songwriter Peggy Seeger singing this song. Note that we do NOT sing the last two verses that Peggy sings, even though they’re traditional.


CALIFORNIA COUNTRY ROADS
Ecojustice Camp song based on the song by John Denver

1. Almost heaven, California,
SantaCruz Mountains, San Lorenzo River,
Life is old there, older than the trees,
Younger than the mountains, growing like a breeze.

2. Country roads, take me home,
To the place I belong:
California, in the mountains,
Take me home, country roads.

3. All my memories gather round them,
Tie-dye lover, surfer in blue waters,
Cool and foggy, clearing to blue skies,
Misty shapes of redwoods, teardrops in my eyes,

Country roads, take me home,
To the place I belong:
California, in the mountains,
Take me home, country roads.

I hear a voice, in the morning hours it calls me,
Radio reminds me of my home far away,
Driving down the road
I get a feeling that I should have been home
Yesterday, yesterday.

Country roads, take me home,
To the place I belong:
California, in the mountains,
Take me home, country roads.

This song is sung around the world. Here’s Nishida Hikaaru singing Country Roads. And lots of people have adapted this song to where they live, just as we’ve done. Here’s the great Israel Kamakawiwoʻole singing about country roads in Hawai’i.


BRANCHING OUT
John Gorka

When I grow up, I want to be a tree,
Want to make my home with the birds and the bees
And the squirrels — they can count on me,
When I grow up, I’m going to be a tree.

Chorus
I’m going to reach, I’m going to reach,
I’m going to reach, reach for the sky.
I’m going to reach, I’m going to reach,
I’m going to reach till I know why.

I’ll let my joints get stiff, root my feet in the ground,
Take the winters off, and settle down,
I’ll keep my clothes till they turn brown,
When I grow up, I’m going to settle down.

Chorus

When the spring comes by, I’m going to get real green,
When my flowers come out, I’ll be a bumble-bee’s dream,
On windy days, I’ll bend and lean,
When I grow up, I’m going to get real green.

Bridge
If I should fall in storm or slumber,
Please don’t turn me into lumber.
I’d rather be a hollow nest
Where birds and mammals can take their rest.

Chorus

(We sing this song a little differently than others do, so we don’t have a recording of it for you to listen to.)


CARRY IT ON
Buffy Sainte-Marie (2015)

Hold your head up, lift the top of your mind,
Put your eyes on the Earth, lift your heart to your own home planet.
What do you see? What is your attitude?
Are you here to improve or damn it?

Look right now, and you will see we’re only
Here by the skin of our teeth as it is,
So take heart, and take care of your link with Life, and

Oh, carry it on. We’re saying:
Oh, carry it on, keep playing,
Oh, carry it on, and praying,
Oh, carry it on.

It ain’t money that makes the world go round,
That’s only temporary confusion,
It ain’t governments that make the people strong,
That’s an opposite illusion,

Look right now, and you will see they’re only
Here by the skin of their teeth as it is,
So take heart, and take care of your link with Life, and

Oh, carry it on. Keep saying:
Oh, carry it on, and playing,
Oh, carry it on, and praying,
Oh, carry it on.

Look right now, and you will see we’re only
Here by the skin of our teeth as it is,
So take heart, and take care of your link with Life —

Is beautiful if you’ve got the sense
To take care of your source of perfection —
Mother Nature, She’s the daughter of God
And the source of all protection,

Look right now, and you will see she’s only
Here by the skin of her teeth as it is,
So take heart, and take care of your link with Life.

Oh, carry it on. Keep saying:
Oh, carry it on, and playing,
Oh, carry it on, and praying,
Oh, carry it on.

Here’s Buffy’s music video of this song.


THE CAT CAME BACK
Harry S. Miller

Old Mister Johnson had troubles of his own,
He had a yellow cat that wouldn’t leave his home,
He tried and he tried to give that cat away,
He gave it to a man going far, far away,

Chorus:
But the cat came back, the very next day,
Yes, the cat came back, they thought she was a goner,
But the cat came back, she just wouldn’t stay away.

The man around the corner said he’d kill the cat on sight,
He loaded up his shotgun with nails and dynamite,
He waited and he waited for that cat to come around,
Ninety seven pieces of the man was all they found,

He gave it to a man going up in a balloon,
Told him for to give it to the man in the moon,
The balloon came down about ninety miles away,
And where he is now I date not say,

He gave it to a man going way out west,
Told him for to take it to the one he loved best,
First the train hit the curve then it jumped the rails,
Not a soul was left behind to tell the gruesome tale,

It’s hard to find videos of this song with the words and tune we use. Here’s a really old video with the Zoom kids singing.


CIRCLE OF THE SUN
Sally Rogers

Babies are born in the circle of the sun,
Circle of the sun on their birthing day.
Babies are born in the circle of the sun,
Circle of the sun on their birthing day.
Clouds to the north, clouds to the south,
Wind and rain to the east and west,
Babies are born in the circle of the sun,
Circle of the sun on their birthing day.

I want to be married on my wedding day….

I want to be buried on my dying day….

Here’s Sally Rogers singing the song (we skip some of her verses).


COUNTRY LIFE
Traditional

Chorus:
Oh I like to rise when the sun she rises
Early in the morning
And I like to hear them small birds singing
Merrily upon the lay land
And hurrah for the life of a country boy
And to ramble in the new mown hay.

1. In the spring we sow in the harvest mow
And that’s how the seasons round they go
But of all the times if choose I may
It’s to ramble in the new mown hay.

Chorus

2. In the winter when the sky is gray
We hedge and we ditch our time away
But in the summer when the sun shines gay
We go rambling in the new mown hay.

Chorus

Here’s Folly Bridge singing Country Life.


DOWN BY THE BAY
Traditional

Down by the bay, where the watermelon grow,
Back to my home, I dare not go,
For if I do, my mother would say:
Did you ever see ——-
Down by the bay!

Here’s a recording with Raffi Cavoukian, in a video with scrolling lyrics.

There are LOTS more verses, pick some you like to bring to camp:
an ant, eat an elephant?
a beagle, flying with the seagulls?
a bear, combing his hair?
a bee, with a sunburnt knee?
a beetle, threading a needle?
a bunny, eating milk and honey?
a cat, swing a baseball bat?
a chicken, do some guitar pickin’?
a chimp, flying in a blimp?
a cockatoo, playing a kazoo?
a cow, with a green eyebrow?
a crab, drive a taxicab?
a deer, throwing a spear?
a dog, dancing with a frog?
a dragonfly, eating an apple pie?
a duck, in a pickup truck?
an eagle, married to a beagle?
a fish, do a hula in a dish?
a fly, wearing a tie?
a fox, hiding in a box?
a frog, hopping on a dog?
a giraffe, who really made you laugh?
a goat, in a ferry boat?
a goose, kissing a moose?
a hawk, knitting a sock?
a hog, going out to jog?
a horse, on a golf course?
a kangaroo, tying her shoe?
a lizard, dressed for a blizzard?
a llama, wearing striped pajamas?
a lobster, shooting at a mobster?
a loon, in a hot air balloon?
a mink, at the skating rink?
a moose, drinking apple juice?
a mouse, build a great big house?
a mule, swimming in a pool?
an octopus, who liked to swear and cuss?
an owl, drying on a towel?
a pig, dancing a jig?
a platypus, drive a shuttle bus?
a rat, with a great big hat?
a seal, on a ferris wheel?
a sheep, driving a jeep?
a slug, give a bug a hug?
a snail, with a dinner pail?
a snake, baking a cake?
a spider, drinking apple cider?
a turkey, who liked to eat beef jerky?
a whale, with a polka-dotted tail?
a wombat, marching off to combat?
a yak, doing jumping jacks?


THE EARTH IS OUR MOTHER
Anonymous

1. The earth is our mother,
We must take care of her,
The earth is our mother,
We must take care of her.

Chorus:
Hey, yanna, ho, yanna, hey, yan, yan,
Hey, yanna, ho, yanna, hey, yan, yan.

2. It’s sacred ground we walk upon,
With every step we take,
It’s sacred ground we walk upon,
With every step we take.

3. The sky is our father,
We must take care of him,
The sky is our father,
We must take care of him.

4. It’s sacred air we breathe in,
With every breath we take,
It’s sacred air we breathe in,
With every breath we take.

Here’s a video with a long version of this song.


ENERGY FROM THE SUN
Dan Harper / Ecojustice Camp (2021)

Energy from the sun flows through us all,
All of earth’s life-forms, both great ones and small.

Light, plus 6 H2O, plus CO2,
Makes C6H12O6 plus O2.

Plants take in water plus carbon dioxide,
From them make oxygen, and food besides.

Energy links us to all life on earth,
We’re in earth’s energy flow from our birth.


EVERY LIVING THING (THE INTERDEPENDENCE SONG)
Dan Harper / Ecojustice Camp (2017)

Chorus:
Every living thing needs another living thing to survive.
Every living thing needs another living thing to survive,
Living things depend on other living things to stay alive.

1. Red-tailed Hawks like to eat Shrew Moles when they can,
Shrew-Moles eat earthworms, it’s on their menu plan,
Earthworms eat compost, and have since time began.

2. Foxes eat rabbits and other herbivores,
Rabbits eat grasses and fruits and lots of forbs,
Plants make their own food from sun and soil and chlorophyll.

3. Mountain Lions like to eat Mule Deer,
And when they die, Mountain Lions get eaten, never fear,
Vultures and microbes eat dead things, and make them disappear.


FIGHT LIKE A GIRL
Raye Zaragoza (2020)

A song written just last year by a fabulous young Indigenous singer-songwriter, who says she wanted to highlight “diverse womxn and girls using their voices to ignite change…. Keep the movement moving with black, trans, indigenous, disabled, and all diverse voices at the center. Fight like a girl!”

1. Grandma Nature, Mother Moon, show me what to do,
When they are taking away our rights, policing our bodies.

Easy, easy, we go,
It’s repeating on and on:
Take me to the water, take me to the snow,
Where all the souls of our mothers had to go,
Take me to the street-sides, teach me your battle-cries,
Take me to the front lines of the war,
To fight like a girl.

2. Send me knowledge, send me peace, from when you were fighting
For all the rights we have today: our homes, our votes, our voices.

Here’s Raye Zaragoza singing this song.


THE GARDEN SONG
David Mallet

Chorus:
Inch by inch, row by row,
Gonna make this garden grow,
All it takes is a rake and a hoe,
And a piece of fertile ground.
Inch by inch, row by row,
Someone bless these seeds I sow,
Someone warm them from below,
Till the rains come tumbling down.

1. Pulling weeds and picking stones,
We are made from dreams and bones,
Feel the need to grow my own
’Cause the time is close at hand.
Grain for grain, sun and rain,
Find my way in nature’s chain,
To my body and my brain,
To the music from the land.

2. Plant your rows straight and long,
Temper them with prayer and song,
Mother Earth can make you strong,
If you give her love and care.
Old crow watch ing hungrily,
From his perch in yonder tree,
In my garden I’m as free
As that feathered thief up there.

Here’s a video of this song with kids dancing in a garden, kinda weird but nice.


GET ON BOARD
Traditional

Get on board, everybody,
Get on board, everybody,
Get on board, everybody,
There’s room for many-a more.

1. The freedom train is coming,
I hear it just at hand,
I hear them car wheels moving,
And rumbling through the land.

2. I see that train a-coming,
A-coming round the curve,
She’s loosened all her steam and brakes,
And straining every nerve.

3. The fare is cheap and all can go,
The rich and poor are there,
No second class aboard this train,
No difference in the fare.

4. It rolls across the trestle,
It spans the Jordan’s tide,
It pulls into the depot,
That’s where this train will ride.

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


HABITAT CHANT
Dan Harper / Ecojustice Camp (2020)

Habitat, habitat, habitat, habitat, habitat, habitat — habitat is where it’s at.
Habitat is where my home is, where there’s nothing to fear,
Food and shelter, clean fresh water, everything I need is here.

Still not recorded.


HOME ON THE RANGE
Traditional

1. Oh, give me a home, where the buffalo roam,
Where the deer and the antelope play,
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word,
And the skies are not cloudy all day.

Chorus:
Home, home on the range,
Where the deer and the antelope play,
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word,
And the skies are not cloudy all day.

2. Where the air is so pure, the zephyrs so free,
The breezes so balmy and light,
That I would not exchange my home on the range
For all the cities so bright.

3. Oh, give me a land where the bright diamond sand
Flows leisurely down the stream;
Where the graceful white swan goes gliding along
Like a maid in a heavenly dream.

4. How often at night when the heavens are bright
With the light of the glittering stars,
Have I stood here amazed and asked as I gazed
If their glory exceeds that of ours.

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


I LOVE THE MOUNTAINS
Traditional

I love the mountains, I love the rolling hills,
I love the flowers, I love the daffodils,
I love the fireside when all the lights are low,
Boom-dee-ah-da, boom-dee-ah-da, boom-dee-ah-da, boom-dee-ah-da.

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


IF I HAD A HAMMER
Lee Hayes and Pete Seeger

If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning,
I’d hammer in the evening, all over this land,
I’d hammer out danger, I’d hammer out warning,
I’d hammer out a love between my brothers and my sisters,
All over this land.

If I had a bell, I’d ring it in the morning,
I’d ring it in the evening, all over this land,
I’d ring out danger, I’d ring out warning,
I’d ring out a love between my brothers and my sisters,
All over this land.

If I had a song, I’d sing it in the morning,
I’d sing it in the evening all over this land,
I’d sing out danger, I’d sing out warning,
I’d sing out a love between my brothers and my sisters,
All over this land.

Well, I’ve got a hammer, and I got a bell
And I’ve got a song to sing all over this land,
It’s the hammer of justice, it’s the bell of freedom,
It’s a song about a love between my brothers and my sisters,
All over this land.

Here’s a video of Trini Lopez doing his version of this classic song.


IF YOU’RE HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT
Animal version by Ecojustice Camp

1. If you’re happy and you know it, clap your paws…
If you’re happy and you know it, clap you paws.
If you’re happy and you know it
And you really want to show it
If you’re happy and you know it, clap your paws.

2. If you’re happy and you know it, flap your wings …

3. If you’re happy and you know it, slap your fins…

4. If you’re happy and you know it, stomp your hooves…

5. If you’re happy and you know it, swing from your tail…


LISTEN TO THE WATER
Bob Schneider

We adapted this song a little, so it mentions the creek next to camp.

Listen to the water, listen to the water,
Rolling down Adobe Creek,
Listen to the water, listen to the water,
Rolling down to the Bay.

I saw some swallows by the waterside….

I saw some ducks by the waterside….

I saw some squirrels by the waterside….

Here’s Bob Schneider’s recording of this song.


LOW BRIDGE (The Erie Canal)
Thomas S. Allen, 1905 (but he probably got it from an older folk song)

The original words to this classic song say — “fifteen YEARS on the Erie Canal,” not fifteen miles, which makes a lot more sense. Plus the chorus has different words each time.

I got a mule, her name is Sal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal,
She’s a a good old worker and a good old pal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal.
We’ve hauled some barges in our day
Filled with lumber, coal, and hay,
And ev’ry inch of the way I the know,
From Albany to Buffalo, oh,
Low bridge, everybody down,
Low bridge, for we’re coming to a town,
You can always tell your neighbor,
You can always tell your pal,
If they’ve ever navigated on the Erie Canal.

We’d better look round for a job, old gal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal,
You bet your life I wouldn’t part with Sal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal.
Giddap, there, girl, we’ve passed that lock,
We’ll make Rome ’fore six o’clock,
So one more trip and then we’ll go
Right straight back to Buffalo, oh,
Low bridge, everybody down,
Low bridge, I got the finest mule in town,
Once a man named Mike McGinty
Tried to put it over Sal,
Now he’s way down at the bottom of the Erie Canal.

I don’t have to call when I want my Sal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal,
She trots from her stall like a good old gal,
Fifteen years on the Erie Canal.
I eat my meals with Sal each day,
I eat beef, and she eats hay,
She ain’t so slow if you want to know,
She put the “Buff” in Buffalo, oh,
Low bridge, everybody down,
Low bridge, she’s the finest mule in town,
Eats a bale of hay for dinner,
And on top of that, my Sal
Tries to drink up all the water on the Erie Canal.

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


MICHAEL ROW YOUR BOAT ASHORE
Traditional

Michael, row your boat ashore, hallelujah,
Michael, row your boat ashore, hallelujah.

River Jordan is deep and wide, hallelujah,
Milk and honey on the other side, hallelujah.

Won’t you help to trim the sail, hallelujah,
Won’t you help to trim the sail, hallelujah.

Michael’s boat a music boat, hallelujah,
MIchael’s boat a music boat, hallelujah.

Here’s ecojustice hero Pete Seeger singing this song, with slightly different words.


OH WHEN THE SAINTS
Music by Virgil Stamps, with new words by Ecojustice Camp

1. Oh when the saints go marching in,
Oh when the saints go marching in,
Oh, how I want to be in that number,
When the saints go marching in.

2. Oh when we stop polluting earth,
Oh when we stop polluting earth,
Oh, how I want to be in that number,
When the saints go marching in.

3. Oh when the rivers all run free,
Oh when the rivers all run free,
Oh, how I want to be in that number,
When the saints go marching in.

4. And when the stars shine clear and bright,
And when the stars shine clear and bright,
Oh, how I want to be in that number,
When the saints go marching in.

5. And on that hallelujah day,
Yes on that hallelujah day,
Oh, how I want to be in that number,
When the saints go marching in.

Here’s a video of the immortal jazz trumpeter Louis Armstrong singing the traditional lyrics.

And here’s blues master B. B. King singing the song.


OLEANNA
English version by Pete Seeger

A song about how immigrants may find the reality of life in the U.S. a little different from what is advertised.

1. Oh, to be in Oleanna,
That is where I’d rather be,
Than be bound in Norway,
And wear the chains of slavery.

Chorus:
Ole, Oleanna,
Ole, Ole anna,
Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole,
Oleanna.

2. In Oleanna, land is free,
The wheat and corn just plant themselves
Then grow a good four feet a day,
While on your bed your rest yourself.

3. Beer as sweet as Munchener
Springs from the ground and flows away,
The cows all like to milk themselves,
And hens lay eggs ten times a day.

4. Little roasted piggies
Just rush about the city streets,
Inquiring so politely
If a slice of ham you’d like to eat.

5. Aye, if you’d begin to live,
To Oleanna you must go;
The poorest wretch in Norway
Becomes a duke in a year or so.

Here’s this song sung in both English (by Pete Seeger) and Norwegian.


ROLL THE OLD CHARIOT ALONG
Trad. African American sea shanty

Roll the old chariot along,
Roll the old chariot along,
Roll the old chariot along,
And we’ll all hang on behind.

And a plate of Irish stew wouldn’t do us any harm,
And a plate of Irish stew wouldn’t do us any harm
And a plate of Irish stew wouldn’t do us any harm,
And we’ll all hang on behind.

We learned this at the monthly sea chantey sing-along at the San Francisco Maritime National Park. The version we know is a little different from anything we could find online.


SWIMMING TO THE OTHER SIDE
Pat Humphries

1. I’m alone and I am searching,
Hungering for answers in my time,
I am balanc’d at the brink of wisdom,
I’m impatient to receive a sign,
I move forward with my senses open,
Imperfection will be my crime,
In humility I will listen,
We’re all Swimming to the Other Side.

Chorus:
We are living ’neath the Great Big Dipper,
We are washed by the very same rain,
We are swimming in the stream together,
Some in power and some in pain,
We can worship the ground we walk on,
Cherishing the beings that we live beside,
Loving spirits will live forever,
We’re all Swimming to the Other Side.

2. On this journey through thoughts and feelings,
Binding intuition, my head, my heart,
I am gathering the tools together,
I’m preparing to do my part,
All of those who have come before me,
Band together to be my guide,
Loving lessons that I will follow,
We’re all Swimming to the Other Side.

3. When we get there we’ll discover,
All of the gifts we’ve been given to share,
Have been with us since life’s beginning,
And we never noticed they were there,
We can balance at the brink of wisdom,
Never recognizing that we’ve arrived,
Loving spirits will live forever,
We’re all Swimming to the Other Side.

Words to the harmony part:
We are living, we are dwelling,
In a grand and awesome time,
We can worship, we can cherish,
All the ones we live beside.

Here’s a video with Pat Humphries singing this song.


THERE’S A HOLE IN THE BUCKET
Traditional

There’s a hole in the bucket, dear Liza, dear Liza,
There’s a hole in the bucket, Dear Liza, a hole.

Then fix it, dear Henry, dear Henry, dear Henry,
Then fix it dear Henry, dear Henry, fix it.

With what shall I fix it
With a straw
The straw is too long
Then cut it
With what shall I cut it
With an axe
The axe is too dull
Then sharpen it
On what shall I sharpen it
On a stone
The stone is too dry
Then wet it
With what shall I wet it
Try water
In what shall I fetch it
In a bucket
There’s a hole in the bucket
Use your head then, dear Henry!

Here’s a video with Harry Belafonte and Odetta singing this song.


THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND
Woody Guthrie (the original 1940 words)

This land is your land, this land is my land,
From California, to the New York Island,
From the redwood forest, to the Gulf Stream waters:
This land was made for you and me.

1. As I was walking that ribbon of highway
I saw above me that endless skyway,
I saw below me that golden valley:
This land was made for you and me.

2. I roamed and rambled and followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts,
And all around me a voice was calling:
This land was made for you and me.

3. When the sun was shining and I was strolling
And the wheat fields waving, and the dust clouds rolling,
As the fog was lifting a voice was chanting:
This land was made for you and me.

4. One bright sunny morning in the shadow of the steeple
By the Relief Office I saw my people,
As they stood hungry, I stood there wondering if
This land was made for you and me.

First, check out this recording: Boston Children’s Chorus tells you why this is an ecojustice song — we sing the song a little differently at camp, but this is a good recording.
Now here’s Woody Guthrie singing this song about how this land belongs to all of us. (Although a lot of First Nations and indigenous people would say that it’s not quite that simple.)


THROW IT OUT THE WINDOW
Traditional

Old Mother Hubbard, she went to the cupboard
To fetch her poor dog a bone,
But when she got there, the cupboard was bare,
So she threw it out the window,
The window, the second story window,
But when she got there, the cupboard was bare,
So she threw it out the window.

Old King Cole was a merry old soul,
A merry old soul was he,
He called for his pipe and he called for his bowl,
And he threw them out the window,
The window, the second story window,
He called for his pipe and he called for his bowl,
And he threw them out the window.

Little Jack Horner sat in a corner
Eating a Christmas pie
He put in his thumb and pulled out a plum
And threw it out the window…

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockle shells,
And I threw it out the window…

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


WADE IN THE WATER
Traditional, Civil Rights Movement version

Wade in the water,
Wade in the water, children,
Wade in the water,
God’s gonna trouble the water.

Well, who’s that coming, all dressed in white? (Wade in the water)
It looks like the children who are fighting for their rights. (God’s gonna trouble the water.)

And who’s that yonder, all dressed in black?…
They come a long way, and they ain’t turning back….

Now see that band, all dressed in blue….
Must be the children that made it through….

(Still looking for a video that we like….)


WATER
Bob Reid

Lyrics coming.

Here’s Bob Reid singing his song (with claymation).


WE’LL STAND THE STORM
Traditional (Fisk Jubilee Singers)

Chorus:
Oh, stand the storm, it won’t be long,
We’ll anchor by and by,
Stand the storm, it won’t be long,
We’ll anchor by and by. it by.

1. My ship is on the ocean,
We’ll anchor by and by,
My ship is on the ocean,
We’ll anchor by and by.

2. My ship is heavy laden,
We’ll anchor by and by,
My ship is heavy laden,
We’ll anchor by and by.

3. She’s sailing on to freedom,
We’ll anchor by and by,
She’s sailing on to freedom,
We’ll anchor by and by.

The Fisk Jubilee Singers version of this song has never been recorded (the Golden Gate Quartet recorded a different version).


WHEN I FIRST CAME TO THIS LAND
Traditional immigrants’s song, English version by Oscar Brand

1. When I first came to this land,
I was not a wealthy man
So I got myself a farm
And I did what I could
And I called my farm, “Muscle in my arm,”
But the land was sweet and good,
And I did what I could.

2. When I first came to this land,
I was not a wealthy man
So I got myself a shack
And I did what I could
And I called my shack, “Break my back,”
And I called my farm, “Muscle in my arm,”
But the land was sweet and good,
And I did what I could.

3. When I first came to this land,
I was not a wealthy man
So I got myself a cow
And I did what I could
And I called my cow, “No milk now,”
And I called my shack, “Break my back,”
And I called my farm, “Muscle in my arm,”
But the land was sweet and good,
And I did what I could.

4. When I first came to this land,
I was not a wealthy man
So I got myself a horse
And I did what I could
And I called my horse, “Dead of course,”
And I called my cow, “No milk now,”
And I called my shack, “Break my back,”
And I called my farm, “Muscle in my arm,”
But the land was sweet and good,
And I did what I could.

6. When I first came to this land,
I was not a wealthy man
So I got myself a dog
And I did what I could
And I called my dog, “What a hog,”
And I called my hen, “Now and then,”
And I called my horse, “Dead of course,”
And I called my cow, “No milk now,”
And I called my shack, “Break my back,”
And I called my farm, “Muscle in my arm,”
But the land was sweet and good,
And I did what I could.

(Still looking for a video that we like….)