Bright Morning Stars

Published by Colla Voce Music
Catalog #36-20401
 
 

SABar/piano
Traditional American folk song text in Englishfficulty rating (1-5): 2.5

This is a delightful American folk tune. Wonderfully Utopian images of our dearly beloved fathers, mothers, brothers, and sisters paint a picture of the human family and society at its best. And then for the text to add the children dancing at the end -- what a delight.

Since this piece is so strophic the challenge was to create verses that arenít the same over and over. There are some knee jerk solutions I suppose, but  I always heed Alice Parkerís advice to avoid, like the plague, the dreaded half step up modulation, even though there are publishers out there whose every publication contains such beasts. So the answer was to use different voicings (let just ďthe brothersĒ sing about their sisters, etc), re-harmonize at times, and, thankfully, a little inspiration of letting those sweet little children dance the song out in a quicker, very fun 5/8 with other odd meters tossed in (implying that the children donít really care if they are doing proper dance steps to a regular beat -- they just wiggle their bodies around and have fun).

This piece is dedicated to Chuck King, an ACDA R & S chair who has been kind enough to include my music in a number of ACDA reading sessions.

Complete perusal score available upon request.

 


TEXT

Bright morning stars are risin', bright morning stars are risin',
bright mornin' stars are risin', day is a-break in' in my soul.

Oh where are our dear fathers, oh where are our dear fathers?
They are down in the valley pray-in', day is a-breakin' in my soul.

And where are our dear mothers, oh where are our dear mothers?
They've gone up to Heaven a-shout-in', day is a-break-in' in my soul.

Oh where are our dear brothers, oh where are our dear brothers?
They're across the valley work-in', day is a-breakin' in my soul.

And where are our dear sisters, oh where are our dear sisters?
They've gone a-way to Zion, day is a-breakin' in my soul.

Oh where are our dear children, where are our dear children?

They're by the stream a-dancin', day is a-breakin' in my soul.

 

  

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       (partial score)

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