Y2 May (or Month #9) Folk Song

"Swing Low Sweet Chariot"

In May learn the folk song "Swing Low Sweet Chariot."

Background Info:

According to Wikipedia:

"'Swing Low, Sweet Chariot' was written by Wallis Willis, a Choctaw freedman in the old Indian Territory in what is now Choctaw County, near the County seat of Hugo, Oklahoma sometime after 1865. He may have been inspired by the sight of the Red River, by which he was toiling, which reminded him of the Jordan River and of the Prophet Elijah's being taken to heaven by a chariot (2 Kings 2:11). Some sources claim that this song and "Steal Away" (also sung by Willis) had lyrics that referred to the Underground Railroad, the freedom movement that helped black people escape from Southern slavery to the North and Canada.

Alexander Reid, a minister at the Old Spencer Academy, a Choctaw boarding school, heard Willis singing these two songs and transcribed the words and melodies. He sent the music to the Jubilee Singers of Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. The Jubilee Singers popularized the songs during a tour of the United States and Europe." The Jubilee Singers recorded "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" in 1909.


(Remember that the nature of a folk song is that there are many variations for lyrics and even sometimes the tune.)

See Lyrics here.

Swing low, sweet chariot.

Comin’ for to carry me home!

Swing low, sweet chariot,

Comin’ for to carry me home!

1. I looked over Jordan an’ what did I see,

Comin’ for to carry me home?

A band of angels comin’ after me,

Comin’ for to carry me home.

2. If you get there before I do,

Comin’ for to carry me home,

Tell all my friends I’m comin’ too,

Comin’ for to carry me home.

3. Sometime I’m up, sometimes I’m down,

Comin’ for to carry me home.

But still my soul feels heavenly bound.

Comin’ for to carry me home.

Sheet Music:

See Sheet Music here.

Swing low, sweet chariot cursive copywork.pdf
Swing low, sweet chariot dotted copywork.pdf
Swing low, sweet chariot regular copywork.pdf
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