Here at The Heart, it’s not just a stereotype. We sing on tribe hills, on the Front Lawn, at worship, and after every meal… just for starters.
Someone in the early days put the words on paper, and over the decades, the songbook has evolved. Every term a favorite song or two will emerge, and it tickles me to witness how those tunes rise and fall from favor. Some songs go so out of style that “nobody” remembers them any more. New songs are taught and become regulars: the Tree Song, the added verses to Barges, Princess Pat and the Rooster Song are recent.
I’m old enough to remember when “Nairobi” and “Anne Marie” were first taught.
Once upon a time, when summer vacation was three months and terms were longer, song contests were a regular part of the camp calendar. The winning songs were added to the Songbook. That’s were many of the regular tunes came from. Now and then, a camper will write a song that is easy to learn and catches on and gets added. Back in the mid-1970’s, Nancy Burkhalter wrote “How Did We Come to Meet Here”. She played guitar (I didn’t) and we walked around at the closing picnic singing it to everyone who would listen. Reneé Coale as a child put “Three Little Pine Trees” to verse, and later added the tune, which has become a Heart tradition.
This past Second Term, our camper Kristiina Pittman wrote a sweet little song, and we believe it will catch on enough to be sung and added to the book.
Down by the River by Kristina Pittman
Here is a link to hear Kristina sing the song she wrote.
Down by the river we know/ how much time we lose
Hand by hand together as one / me and you
Friends forever at The Heart / a place where we never part
‘Cause I know you’ve got me / and I’ve got you