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Lyrics and References for the Music for Celebrating Black History: Blessings from the Interfaith Community

Sunday, February 26 (3-5 pm); Hosted by Shiloh Baptist Chuch, One Holton Street, Medford, MA

Sponsored by the City of Medford & Medford Interfaith Clergy Association.

 

Somethin’ Bout the Spirit of Jesus

Link to S-Factor Recording

Well I feel good, good

Well I feel good

Oh yes, my lord

because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus

That makes me feel good, good, good, good

 

Well I can love, love love

Well I can love, oh yes my lord

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

that makes me love good, good good, good

 

Well I’ve got joy, joy, joy

Well I’ve got joy down in my soul

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

That brings me such joy, joy joy, joy

 

Well we can sing, sing sing

well we can sing, oh yes my lord

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

that makes me sing good, good good, good

 

Well I can serve, serve serve

Well I can serve, oh yes my lord 

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

That makes me serve good, good good, good

 

If you feel good, good good

If you feel good, then clap your hands

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

that makes me feel good, good good

 

Well I feel good, good good

Well I feel good, oh yes my lord

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

That makes me feel good, good good

 

Because there’s something ’bout the spirit of Jesus 

That makes me feel good, good good, good (3x)

 

Ride On

Link to S-Factor Recording

Ride On King Jesus!

No man canna hinnn-derrr theeee.

Ride On King Jesus!

No man canna T1 Hinda T2 Hinda Bass Hinda Thee!

Ride On King Jesus! Ride On No man canna Hinder thee 

No man canna hinder thee

Ride On King Jesus! 

No man canna T1 Hinda T2 Hinda Bass Hinda Thee!

Ride on King Jesus Ride on 

No man canna hinder The X 4

No

Solo 1 No weapon

No 

Solo 2 Formed against me shall prosper

No

Solo 3 It will never prosper

No

Solo 4 It won’t work

No man canna hinder thee

No man canna hinder thee

T1 In that grey getting up morning Fair thee well

All: Fair thee well

T2 In that grey getting up morning Fair thee well

All: Fair thee well

B1 In that grey getting up morning Fair thee well

All: Fair thee well

All: In that grey getting up morning Fair thee well

Fair thee weeeeeeeeellllllll

When I get to Heaven gonna wear a robe

No man canna hinder me

When I get to Heaven gonna wear a robe

No man canna hinder me

Gonna walk all over those streets of gold

No man canna hinder me

Goin to a place where ill never grow old

No man canna hinder me X4

Ooo ooo oooo ooooo ooo X2 soft

Ooo ooo oooo ooooo ooo X2 Growing into hmmm

HMMM Hmmmm HMMM HMMM X4

Ride on King Jesus! 

No man canna T1 Hinda T2 Hinda Bass Hinder

Thee! 

Ride On King Jesus!

 

Wade in the Water

Wade in the water

Wade in the water, children,

Wade in the water

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

Wade in the water

Wade in the water, children,

Wade in the water

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

See that host all dressed in white

God’s a-going to trouble the water

The leader looks like the Israelite

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

Wade in the water

Wade in the water, children,

Wade in the water

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

Wade in the water

Wade in the water, children,

Wade in the water

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

See that band all dressed in red

God’s a-going to trouble the water

Looks like the band that Moses led

God’s a-going to trouble the water

 

Wade in the water

Wade in the water, children,

Wade in the water

God’s a-going to trouble the water

Freedoms

Link to S-Factor Recording

Lift every voice and sing

Till earth and heaven ring

Ring with the harmonies of Liberty

Let our rejoicing rise

High as the listening skies

Let it resound loud as the rolling sea

 

Stony the road we trod

Bitter the chastening rod

Felt in the days when hope unborn had died

Yet with a steady beat

Have not our weary feet

Come to the place for which our fathers sighed?

 

God of our weary years

God of our silent tears

Thou who has brought us thus far on the way

Thou who has by Thy might Led us into the light

Keep us forever in the path, we pray

Lest our feet stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee

 

Shadowed beneath Thy hand

May we forever stand

True to our God

True to our native land

Our native land

 

B1 

Oooo freedom oooo freeedom

Oooo OOo Freedom over meee

And before Id be a slave 

I’d be buried in my grave

And go home to my lord and be free

 

And before id be a slave id be buried in my grave

And go home 

To my lord and be free

 

And before id be a slave id be buried in my grave

 

Keep us forever in thy path we pray

Lest our feat straight from the places our god where we met thee

Lest our hearts 

Drunk with the wine of the world we for

Getttt theeee

And before id be a slave id be buried in my grave

And go home 

To my lord and be free

Be free and be free X however many conductor wants

 

T2

I don’t feel no ways tied

I’ve come to far from where I started from

Nobody told me that the road would be easy 

I don’t believe 

He brought me this far

To Leave me

 

Nobody told me that the road would be easy

Keep us forever in thy path we pray

Lest our feat straight from the places our god where we met thee

Lest our hearts 

Drunk with the wine of the world we for

Getttt theeee

 

Nobody told me that the road would be easy 

I don’t believe 

He brought me this far

To Leave me

 

T1/T0

We shall overcome 

We shall overcome

We shall overcome Someday 

 

Deep In my Heart 

I do believe 

Keep us forever in thy path

We pray

Lest our feet

Stray from the places our god where we met thee

Lest our heart

Drunk with the wine of the world we forget thee

Deep in my heart

I do believe

We shall overcome someday

Someday 

Someday 

Someday

 

Ken Y’hi Ratzon 

(May it be God’s will) 

by Elana Arian 

 

May [I/ you/ we] be safe 

May [I/ you/ we] be free 

May [I/ you/ we] find space

Space to just be

(2x) Ken y’hi ratzon, ken y’hi ratzon

May [I/ you/ we] find [my/ your/ our] way back home. 

 

About Robert Nathaniel Dett 

Barcarolle and Juba from “In The Bottoms” Suite

Keywords: Americana, Tradition, Character Pieces

Composed in 1913

Robert Nathaniel Dett, born in Canada and later living in the United States, was an esteemed musician, scholar and choir director. He received his bachelor’s degree and an honorary doctorate from Oberlin as well as a master’s degree from Eastman, where the Sibley Library preserves many of his manuscripts. He also studied at Harvard University and at the American Conservatory with pedagogue Nadia Boulanger. 

In 1926, he became the music director at the Hampton Institute in Virginia, and as conductor, he skyrocketed the choir to national prestige with critically acclaimed performances at New York’s Carnegie Hall and Boston’s Symphony Hall, among others. In 1930, the Hampton Choir toured seven countries and performed for President Hoover at the White House.

In addition to composing vocal and keyboard works, Dett was a skilled arranger of music and created two collections of “Negro Spirituals.” Furthermore, Dett wrote extensively on the history of African-American music and its modern performance, for which he received numerous awards from major universities. 

His set of character pieces from 1913, entitled “In the Bottoms,” are “impressions of moods or scenes” from slave life in the river bottoms in the South. The term barcarolle refers to a morning river boat ride and juba, as Dett describes, refers to slaves “stamping on the ground with the foot and following it with two staccato pats of the hands in two-four time.”

We have this wonderful store of folk music—the melodies of an enslaved people… But this store will be of no value unless we utilize it, unless we treat it in such manner that it can be presented in choral form, in lyric and operatic works, in concertos and suites and salon music—unless our musical architects take the rough timber of Negro themes and fashion from it music which will prove that we, too, have national feelings and characteristics, as have the European peoples whose forms we have zealously followed for so long. — R. Nathaniel Dett

Robert Nathaniel Dett’s contributions to composition and commitment to ethnomusicology prove him to be one of the most important and forward looking 20th century American voices.

 

Text of Prayer:

Blessed Are You Who Bear the Light

Blessed are you

who bear the light

in unbearable times,

who testify

to its endurance

amid the unendurable,

who bear witness

to its persistence

when everything seems

in shadow

and grief.

 

Blessed are you

in whom

the light lives,

in whom

the brightness blazes—

your heart

a chapel,

an altar where

in the deepest night

can be seen

the fire that

shines forth in you

in unaccountable faith,

in stubborn hope,

in love that illumines

every broken thing

it finds.

© Jan Richardson from Circle of Grace: A Book of Blessings for the Seasons.

 

How Great is Our God

 

The splendour of a King

Clothed in Majesty

Let all the earth rejoice

All the earth rejoice

He wraps Himself in light

And darkness tries to hide

And trembles at His voice

Trembles at His voice

How great is our God

Sing with me, how great is our God

 

And all will see how great

How great is our God

Age to age, He stands

And time is in His hands

Beginning and the end

Beginning and the end

The Godhead, three in one

Father, Spirit, Son

The Lion and the Lamb

Lion and the Lamb

How great is our God

Sing with me, how great is our God

 

And all will see how great

How great is our God

Name above all names

Worthy of all praise

My heart will sing, how great is our God

You’re the name above all names (all name)

You are worthy of all praise (all praise)

And my heart will sing, how great is our God

How great is our God

Sing with me, how great is our God

 

And all will see how great

How great is our God

How great is our God

How great is our God

How great, how great is our God

The whole world say it

The whole world say it

How great is our God

How great is our God

How great, how great is our God 

 

Lift Every Voice and Sing

 

Lift every voice and sing

Till earth and Heaven ring

Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;

Let our rejoicing rise,

High as The list’ning skies,

let it resound loud as the Rolling sea

 

Sing a song

full of faith that the Dark past has taught us,

Sing a song

full of The hope that the present has brought Us;

Facing the rising sun

of our new day Begun,

Let us march on till victory is Won.

Stony the road we trod,

 

Bitter the Chast’ning rod,

Felt in the day that hope

Unborn had died;

Yet with a steady Beat,

Have not our weary feet,

Come to the Place on which our fathers sighed?

 

We have Come

over a way that with tears has been Watered,

We have come,

treading our path Through the blood of the slaughtered,

Out from The gloomy past,

till now we stand at Last

Where the white gleam

of our star is Cast.

 

God of our weary years,

God of Our silent tears,

Thou who has brought us thus

Far on the way;

Thou who has by thy Might,

Led us into the light,

Keep us Forever in the path, we pray

 

Lest our feet

Stray from the places, our God, where we met Thee, 

May we forever stand,

True to our God, 

 

Shadowed beneath the Hand,

May we forever stand,

True to our God,

True to our native land

 

One More Time

Link to S-Factor Recording

 

One More Time One More Time

He Allowed us to come together one more time X4

 

Same Rhythm and notes in: Oooos X2

While Solo goes

Behold how good and how pleasant it is

For Brethren to dwell together in unity X2

 

One More Time One More Time

He Allowed us to Pray together one more time X2

 

Same Rhythm and notes in: Oooos X2 

While solo Goes

 

One More Time One More Time

He Allowed us to Sing together one more time X2

 

Same Rhythm and notes in: Oooos X2 

When I get weak it’s like I can’t go on 

It’s like all of my hopes and all my joy is gone

I remember what he said to me and how he peace mind

He allowed us to come together one more átime

 

One More Time One More Time

He Allowed us to Come together one more time X2

 

Behold

How good 

And how pleasant it ispp

For Brethren to dwell together in unity

Behold

How good 

And how pleasant it is

For Brethren to dwell together in unity

 

Soloist does ad libs/ call and response with each phrase

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