Monday, March 9, 2009

Earth Hour 2008 video: fun in the dark for a serious cause

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In my post about the upcoming Earth Hour 2009 (March 28) I said I might share our video from Earth Hour 2008. Here it is..........I hope you have a good laugh!

(There are actually some really inspiring Earth Hour 2008 videos out there at You Tube to build excitement for 2009.)





Setting the Scene....... Earth Hour 2008 at our house. First view is across the living room looking out the front windows at the faint gloaming in the sky. After that you'll see the glow of flames in our gas stove and from scattered candles. Mike is on guitar.
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Song selections (just clips of): Kumbaya, Light One Candle, and Mir Mir, U mir.
Additional sound effects by Shiva, who was a kitten at that time (and now weighs 13 pounds).

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{Mike feels badly that he was goofing around with Kumbaya, but the whole experience of being in the dark for a purpose made us rather giddy with delight that night. We had a lot of fun.}

Kumbaya - (also spelled Kum Ba Yah) is a spiritual song from the 1930s. It enjoyed newfound popularity during the folk revival of the 1960s and became a standard campfire song in Scouting and other nature-appreciative organizations.

The song was originally associated with human and spiritual unity, closeness and compassion, and it still is, but more recently it is also cited or alluded to in satirical, sarcastic or even cynical ways that suggest blind or false moralizing, hypocrisy, or naively optimistic views of the world and human nature.

The origins of the song are disputed. Recent research has found that sometime between 1922 and 1931, members of an organization called the Society for the Preservation of Spirituals collected a song from the South Carolina coast. Come By Yuh, as they called it, was sung in Gullah, the creole or pidgin dialect spoken by the former slaves living on the Sea Islands of South Carolina and Georgia. In Gullah, "Kumbaya" means "Come by here", so the lyric could be translated as "Come by here, my lord, come by here." Another version of Kumbaya, which locals asserted was a traditional regional folk song, was preserved on a wax cylinder in May 1936 by Robert Winslow Gordon, founder of what became the American Folklife Center. Gordon discovered a woman named Ethel Best singing Come By Here with a group in Raiford, Florida.

These facts contradict the longstanding copyright and authorship claim of Reverend Marvin V. Frey. Rev. Frey (1918–1992) claimed to have written the song circa 1936 under the title "Come By Here," inspired, he claimed, by a prayer he heard delivered by "Mother Duffin," a storefront evangelist in Portland, Oregon. It first appeared in this version in "Revival Choruses of Marvin V. Frey", a lyric sheet printed in Portland, Oregon in 1939. Frey claimed the change of the title to "Kum Ba Yah" came about in 1946, when a missionary family returned from Africa where they had sung Frey's version and slightly changed the words. This family toured America singing the song with the text "Kum Ba Yah". This account is contradicted by the fact that a nearly identical Gullah version of the song was recorded almost two decades earlier.

Joe Hickerson, one of the Folksmiths, recorded the song in 1957, as did Pete Seeger in 1958. Joe Hickerson later succeeded Gordon at the American Folklife Center. The song enjoyed newfound popularity during the folk revival of the 1960s, largely due to Joan Baez's 1962 recording of the song, and became associated with the Civil Rights Movement of that decade. It is a standard campfire song in Scouting, YMCA, the Asian Guides, and others. It was also commonly used in Catholic and "folk" masses of the 1970s.
-Wikipedia

Kumbaya my lord, kumbaya
Kumbaya my lord, kumbaya
Kumbaya my lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya

Someones singing lord, kumbaya
Someones singing lord, kumbaya
Someones singing lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbayah

Someones laughing, lord, kumbaya
Someones laughing, lord, kumbaya
Someones laughing, lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya

Someones crying, lord, kumbaya
Someones crying, lord, kumbaya
Someones crying, lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya

Someones praying, lord, kumbaya
Someones praying, lord, kumbaya
Someones praying, lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya

Someones sleeping, lord, kumbaya
Someones sleeping, lord, kumbaya
Someones sleeping, lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya
Oh lord, kumbaya



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{Mike forgot the words, adding to our glee, but you can get the words at the link below.}


Light One Candle -- chords and lyrics
"Light One Candle" is a 1983 Hanukkah song written by Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul, and Mary. It is a very popular song and it has been sung by the trio at their concerts. It is a song that encourages the Jewish people to remember the history of the holiday and continue their heritage. - Wikipedia


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{I have been unsuccessful in finding background on this song. We learned it in a peace group at the beginning of the Iraq War.}

Mir
(Russian: Мир, Russian for either Peace or World)

Spirit of Peace
to your cause, we give our strength.
That love may reign and war may cease.
Mir Mir, U mir.





Photo and graphics: tinypic.com

11 comments:

This blog managed by Erin Davis said...

Oh, wow! I love Kumbaya and Light One Candle. They have always been so inspirational to me. I'm glad you noted how Kumbaya is often ridiculed. I think it is a powerful song. Thanks for sharing the video. :0)

Steve Morozumi said...

holy crap! your video rocks, and so do you! you guys have great voices, and who knew you had a talented guitar player in your life.

i love that just the candles are visible, it looks really cool and trippy.

your wonderful video entertained, entrhalled me, and cracked me up! that cat yelling was one of the things that cracked me up. so terrible, yet so perfect for your video!

thanks so much for that Lydia.

hope things are well with your bedding! that sounded like quite an ordeal! wow. thanks for that amazing comment at fluxlife today. that was great! loved it! i felt your pain, yet was so entertained at the same time!

have a great week!

-Steve @ fluxlife

Jennifer said...

I always learn something when I visit -- the history of Kumbaya is quite interesting (a stolen song. I don't understand what motivates someone to poach something like that. Isn't that contradictory to the message?)

And the video is quite instructive. Now I've made a note : make sure I know if the cats are underfoot during Earth Hour! :) The good news is, they are so ancient that they sleep even more than regular cats do. Chances are they'll be curled up on the couch.

Lydia said...

@Erin- Kumbaya has been a favorite of mine ever since I learned it as a kid in church camp. I think people poke fun at it because they are so comfortable with it; does that make sense?

@Steve- Great week to you also! You are just too kind with those compliments. :) I'll be sure to have Mike look at this post/comments. I love it when he plays guitar.....always wonderful.

Thanks for providing the Monday gripe forum there at Fluxlife as I really did need to let loose about the trouble with the dog beds. Know what? She did it again last night, but because I had put the beds in those Hefty Cinchsaks I only had the top layer to wash. :) I've narrowed it down to the dog who is currently on Amoxicilyn....think it's disturbing to the tummy.

@Jennifer- Wasn't that a strange twist to learn that the wrong someone (a Reverent, yet) claimed authorship to the song? I had no idea of the rich history behind Kumbaya. I also didn't realize that Light One Candle was written as recently as the 1980s....I pegged it as a more historic song!

Yes, keep the cats safe as you can on Earth Hour. This year we have Willow, not yet six months old, and my predominant worry with her is her curiosity with what is on top of tables, i.e., candles could be a disaster ....... (will use caution)

francessa said...

Very entertaining, Lydia! Thanks for sharing. I hope there'll be another Earth hour video this year! :-)

Buddha said...

I was most inspired by the light of friendship that fills up your house!
I can't believe you stepped on the cat.

Lydia said...

@Francessa- I'm glad you enjoyed it and I suppose we'll try another one this year, but I'm concerned about new kitten, Willow, being attracted to candles...
Are you going to take part from Austria?

@Buddha- That's sweet for you to say that.
Even now, at 13 pounds, Shiva will plop herself right in front of you while you're walking by. I don't know if she has a sado-masochistic streak in her or what!

francessa said...

Sure I'll take part (did so last year, too)!

Lydia said...

@Francessa- I'll think of you then. :)

Nature Concern said...

Thanks for promoting Earth Hour! Another way you can recruit people to the cause is by creating a Earth Hour group on Commit21.com. Simply create a group about one action that you will commit to do for Earth Hour and recruit your friends, family, and co-workers to get involved in that action as well. When it comes to climate change, simple actions can make huge differences and Commit21 leverages social media to influence networks of friends, family, and co-workers. Check it out at www.commit21.com

Lydia said...

@Nature Concern- It is my pleasure to promote and indeed to take part in Earth Hour. I'll check out the site and hope others do too.

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