Sing Books with Emily, the Blog

One of my most troublesome weaknesses is performance anxiety.  But the performance anxiety is situational.  For years, I learned, performed and practiced the art of cabaret.  The performance anxiety I experienced was a deal breaker.  I worried about EVERYTHING, until all the fun drained away.

It was amazing to discover my Sing Books program gave me ZERO performance anxiety.  Sing Books brings me creative fulfillment and pure JOY in the practice of it.  I have come to discover that there is wonderful magic in making music in place, right where you are.  It’s fun to discover that one doesn’t have to go anywhere to make or enjoy music.  With Sing Books, it’s already there. Sing Books is part of my day, not set aside as a special event.  I go to where the audience is (libraries, classrooms) and we make music.  No jumping through hoops.  Just music made fresh and enjoyed instantly.  Oh, how I love it.  It is immeasurably pleasurable.

It took about 5 years to slowly discover and develop what I ended up calling Sing Books with Emily.  It took time to grow repertoire, skill and identity.  Part of what drove me into practicing and developing Sing Books was that the other kinds of performances I’d engaged in made me so unhappy.

A friend of mine, Kevin McCluskey, once told me, “You have to figure out where your art fit into your life.”  It was very good advice, and not easily done.  It takes coming to terms with doing what you love as opposed to doing what seems like having artistic validity.

Sing Books is what I created.  Sing Books is my art and I practice it every day.  Sing Books allows me to share music and makes it me incredibly happy.

Maybe Sing Books will turn out to be what I was MEANT to do.

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Addendum 7/31/2014

I wrote this in my head, musing along as I was driving my children to their various camps this morning.  Just a few minutes ago, I saw that one of my friends posted this quote on his Facebook page:

“…the arts and the humanities aren’t just there to be consumed and enjoyed whenever we have a free moment in our lives. We rely on them constantly. We need them. Like medicine, they help us live.”

President Obama at 2013 National Medals of Arts and Humanities Ceremony

It’s one of the things I was trying to say above…the immense pleasure of the art in my life is like medicine, healing, and makes me know I’m doing the right thing.

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Find the quote, too, on Whitehouse.gov
http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/07/28/president-obama-awards-2013-national-medals-arts-and-humanities-white-house

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Related Posts

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Info and Thinking about Singable Picture Books
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/resources-for-inspiration-and-information/

This is an addendum to the post:

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STOPPING BY WOODS, AN ILLUSTRATED SONG
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2009/12/08/stopping-by-woods-on-a-snowy-evening-a-singable-book-song-history-sing-along-tracks-lyrics-and-heartfelt-musings/

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Addendum 7/27/2014

Writing this in July 2014, I’ve been taking guitar lessons for about a year now.  I’ve collected up a number of chords with which I am familiar and which feel like friends to me and I use many of them at will to arrange songs to accompany myself on guitar…familiar songs and some written together with my children.

My guitar teacher Josh pointed out that, thought the F chord, is common in the keys I frequently use for singing, I’ve successfully avoided using it in my guitar playing and maybe it’s about time I made it a friend with the others.

OK.  But the F chord is difficult.  Playing the the “real” way (as in playing it as a bar chord) is currently impossible, but the “cheat” version is hard enough, requiring me to use all 4 playing fingers on my left hand while remembering not to strum the top and bottom strings (both the note E, which do not belong in the chord).

So I decided to find a song that I really want to play and that would require me to use an F chord.  Looking through the book:

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modest coll trad songs of colonial period
A Modest Collection of Traditional Songs of the Colonial Period
Words and Music by Various Artists
Collected and Edited by M. Richard Tully

I found a simple arrangement of the song GREENSLEEVES, which a few years ago I discovered is the perfect tune for singing Robert Frost’s poem STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING, which has since become one of my favorite songs to sing…a classic, gorgeous American poem to an ancient, gorgeous tune.

We have a winner.  Now I begin…

Here are the GREENSLEEVES guitar chords fitted to STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING.

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Stopping by Woods w Guitar Chords SBWE
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening Song Sheet with Guitar Chords by ELEG for SBWE
Poem by Robert Frost
Sing to the Tune of Greensleeves
Song Sheet Assembled by Emily Leatha Everson Gleichenhaus
To view or print this song sheet, click here:
Stopping by Woods w Guitar Chords SBWE

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Related Posts

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POETRY SINGABLE POETRY IN COMPILATIONS

An list of  singable poems from compilations of poetry for children
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2011/04/17/singable-poetry-a-list-of-poems-that-can-be-sung-from-illustrated-compilations-of-poetry-and-singable-picture-books/

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POETRY, SINGABLE POETRY IN INDIVIDUALLY ILLUSTRATED SINGABLE PICTURE BOOKS
A list of individually illustrated poems that have been set to music and can be sung
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/04/20/poems-individually-illustrated-spb/

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THE ROSE FAMILY (POEM BY ROBERT FROST), A SINGABLE PICTURE BOOK
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/11/24/the-rose-family-a-singable-poem-by-robert-frost-musical-setting-by-elliott-carter-and-a-singable-picture-book/

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STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING (POEM BY ROBERT FROST), A SINGABLE PICTURE BOOK
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2009/12/08/stopping-by-woods-on-a-snowy-evening-a-singable-book-song-history-sing-along-tracks-lyrics-and-heartfelt-musings/

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WINTER

Singable Picture Books for Winter
Some of these are sung at Christmastime, but this is a list of songs about Winter that you can sing all season long!
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/singable-picture-books-for-winter/

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SING BOOKS WITH EMILY SINGABLE ADVENT CALENDAR
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/the-sing-books-with-emily-singable-advent-calendar/

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CHRISTMAS

A Collection of Singable Picture Books that celebrate CHRISTMAS!
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/11/28/singable-picture-books-for-christmas/

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USEFUL TUNES IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/07/15/useful-tunes-in-the-public-domain/

This is an addendum to the post:
SIMPLE GIFTS, AN ILLUSTRATED SONG
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/simple-gifts-a-singable-picture-book/

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Addendum 7/26/2014

Simple Gifts is one of my favorite songs.

With the help of my guitar teacher, I figured out some simple chords for accompanying myself.

Here’s a song sheet, so you can sing along, too:

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Simple Gifts ELEG for SBWE
Simple Gifts Song Sheet with Guitar Chords for SBWE
Words and Music by Elder Joseph Brackett
Guitar Chords and Arrangement by ELEG for SBWE
To view or print this song sheet, click here:
Simple Gifts ELEG for SBWE

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Related Posts

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In the Bleak Midwinter, The February Blizzard of 2010, A Singable Poem, A Simple Gift

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/02/07/in-the-bleak-midwinter/

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In the Bleak Midwinter, A Singable Poem, A Simple Gift

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/26/in-the-bleak-midwinter-a-singable-poem-a-simple-gift/

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The Little Drummer Boy, A Singable Picture Book, A Simple Gift

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/24/the-little-drummer-boy-a-singable-picture-book-a-simple-gift/

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Simple Gifts at the White House:

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/23/simple-gifts-at-the-white-house/

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Simple Gifts, a Singable Picture Book:

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/simple-gifts-a-singable-picture-book/

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WINTER

Singable Picture Books for Winter
Some of these are sung at Christmastime, but this is a list of songs about Winter that you can sing all season long!
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/singable-picture-books-for-winter/

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SING BOOKS WITH EMILY SINGABLE ADVENT CALENDAR
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/11/29/the-sing-books-with-emily-singable-advent-calendar/

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SIMPLE GIFTS, Continuing to Captivate and part of Wooster Group’s Staging of Shaker Spirituals
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/06/06/simple-gifts-continuing-to-captivate-and-part-of-wooster-groups-staging-of-shaker-spirituals/

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A Simple Gifts Song Sheet with Guitar Chords by ELEG for SBWE
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/26/a-simple-gifts-song-sheet-with-guitar-chords-by-eleg-for-sbwe/

I was in my guitar lesson the other day and found myself spewing out all sorts of stream of consciousness and seeming non sequiturs…but this almost always happens.

It probably felt like a waste of the precious little time to my guitar teacher.  Ultimately it is embarrassing, since it is all so personal, but I can’t help it.  The songs and the making of music are all stories to me.  Every note, every word, every strum and chord MEANS something to me.  They all represent, remind, and inspire images, memories, and ideas…and I want to share those things, contribute to and interpret them, and make something new.

I know I should stick to the business at hand (the guitar playing), but I can’t help also feeling that the stories (images, memories and ideas) ARE the business at hand.  They are the fuel that drives everything.  If not for those, why bother to play the guitar, or sing, or act?  The playing of the right notes at the right time is the skill…but everything else (images, memories, ideas, and the need to share, contribute and interpret) is where the ART is.

I’m not saying I’m a good artist…but I’m saying that I try and that I WANT to be good.  And, in any case, I can’t really help myself…so I’ll just keep going (even if sometimes it is embarrassing)…

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Related Posts

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Info and Thinking about Singable Picture Books
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/resources-for-inspiration-and-information/

I drove away from my visit to Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library today absolutely floating on Cloud 9.  It was such a fun morning of singing with old friends and new.

Here’s what we sang (listed in alpha order),

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ABCs

Traditional Words and Tune
Illustrated by Emily Leatha Everson Gleichenhaus

If you are interested in a copy of this book, please email: SingBooksWithEmily.att.net, or lave a comment to this post.

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The Big Bell and the Little Bell

Words and Music by Martin Kalmanoff
Illustrated by Alastair Graham
(This book is packaged with a CD with two recordings of the song!)

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frosty the snowman wade zahares
Frosty the Snowman
Words and Music by Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins
Performed by Kenny Loggins
Illustrated by Wade Zahares
ISBN 978-1-62354-012-8

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Grandma’s Feather Bed (John Denver’s)
Words and Music by Jim Connor
Adapted and Illustrated by Christopher Canyon

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i'm late sbwe book cover for blog
I’m Late
From Disney’s ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Words by Bob Hilliard
Music by Sammy Fain
This book is for home and classroom use only.

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Late for School

Words and Music by Steve Martin
Illustrated by C.F. Payne
Published by Grand Central Publishing/Hachette Book Group, New York, 2010
ISBN 978-044-6-55702-3

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rubber duckie SPB for SBWE cover only
Rubber Duckie
Words and Music by Jeffrey Moss
Book Assembled for Sing Books with Emily

This book is for home and classroom use only.

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smokey the bear song 1 - smaller
Smokey the Bear (Song)
Words and Music by Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, 1952

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smokey the bear song 2 - smaller
Smokey the Bear (Conservation Pledge, Flip side of Smokey the Bear Song)
Words and Music by Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, 1952

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smokey the bear book eleg sbwe cover only
Smokey the Bear (Illustrated Song)
Words and Music by Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins
Pictures Assembled from Resources Online
This book is for classroom use only.

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Star Spangled Banner

Words by Francis Scott Key
Music by J. Stafford Smith
Illustrated by Todd Ouren
(This book features printed music and historical information)

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take me home country roads
Take Me Home, Country Roads

Words and Music by  John Denver, Taffy Nivert and Bill Danoff
Words Adapted by Christopher Canyon
Illustrated by Christopher Canyon
ISBN 978-1584690726

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Take Me Out to the Ball Game
Words by Jack Norworth
Music by Albert Von Tilzer
Illustrated by Amiko Hirao
Performed by Carly Simon
This edition gets a GOLD STAR for including the FULL song (both verses and chorus) and a fabulous recording of Carly Simon and her delightful arrangement she made for Ken Burn’s documentary Baseball.

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There’s a Train Out for Dreamland
Music and Lyrics by Frederich H. Heider and Carl Kress
Illustrated by Jane Dyer and Brooke Dyer
ISBN 978-0-06-058022-3

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Yellow Submarine (Sing-A-Song Storybook)
Words and Music by John Lennon and Paul McCartney
Illustrated by Cathy Holly

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 ZYXs, a Singable Picture Book
Traditional Words and Tune
Illustrated by Emily Leatha Everson Gleichenhaus
Sing the ZYX’s along with me!  Just click here:

http://soundcloud.com/singbookswithemily/zyxs-eleg-2010

If you are interested in a copy of this book, please email: SingBooksWithEmily.att.net, or lave a comment to this post.

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Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library
2239 Old Bridge Road in the Tackett’s Mill Shopping Center
Woodbridge, VA 22192-2930
703-792-5675

Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library website:
http://www.pwcgov.org/government/dept/library/Pages/Lake-Ridge-Neighborhood-Library.aspx

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The 2014 Summer Reading Program theme is PAWS TO READ

paws to read

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In honor of  PAWS TO READ, I assembled a list of books that feature our furry friends:

DOGS IN ILLUSTRATED SONGS
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/dogs-in-illustrated-songs/

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PAWS TO READ online Calendar 2014:
http://www.pwcgov.org/government/dept/library/Documents/Calendar%20of%20Events/2014_06-8interactive.pdf

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Some marvelous signatures from little ones in my guest book, including new friends and old friends:

  • Sage
  • Ciara
  • Sydney
  • Hanne
  • Hunter
  • Gavin
  • Garrett
  • Joi
  • Dominic

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Thank you to my friends how left me such nice notes!   I’m so grateful!

We look forward to seeing you each summer!  Always fans.
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

Great!
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

We love your voice.
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

My favorite song was Country Road.
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

Thank you, you are so sweet.
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

Thank you!  We had a wonderful time.
Guestbook note, Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library, Woodbridge, VA,  7/23/2014

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PROJECT PUT: PICK UP TRASH, THEME SONG

PUT-Banner

My daughter Eloise wanted to start a movement to remove litter from our communities,

So we created Project PUT: Pick Up Trash (and put it where it belongs, in the recycle or a designated trash receptacle),
http://projectput.wordpress.com/

All you have to do is pledge to not litter and to Pick Up Trash whenever you can:
http://projectput.wordpress.com/take-the-project-put-pledge/

We got recognition from the author of the new picture book about the song MY COUNTRY TIS OF THEE, who is hosting the the My Country Tis of Thee Music Project, for our Project PUT Theme song!
Sing Along with Eloise and Emily, here:

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Related Posts

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SONGS WE SANG AT GAINESVILLE NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Saturday, July 12, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/14/the-songs-we-sang-at-the-gainesville-neighborhood-library-on-7122014/

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SONGS WE SANG AT INDEPENDENT HILL NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Saturday, June 28, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/04/the-songs-we-sang-at-independent-hill-neighborhood-library-in-prince-william-county-va-6282014/

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SONGS WE SANG AT DUMFRIES NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Wednesday, July 9, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/the-songs-we-sang-at-dumfries-neighborhood-library-792014/

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THE SONGS WE SANG AT TUCKAHOE, CARLIN SPRINGS AND CLAREMONT ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS IN THE 2013-2014 SCHOOL YEAR

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/06/29/the-many-marvelous-songs-we-sang-at-tuckahoe-claremont-and-carlin-springs-elementary-schools-in-arlington-va-in-the-2013-2014-school-year/

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Praise for Sing Books with Emily
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/praise-for-sing-books-with-emily/

Friends, Sing Books with me
on Wednesday, July, 23, 2014 10:30am
at the Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library
in Woodbridge, VA

Songs might include:
There’s a Train Out for Dreamland, Rubber Duckie, Smokey the Bear, Rhode Island is Famous for You, You’re a Grand Old Flag…and many many more! Come Sing Along!

Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library
2239 Old Bridge Road in the Tackett’s Mill Shopping Center
Woodbridge, VA 22192-2930
703-792-5675

Lake Ridge Neighborhood Library website:
http://www.pwcgov.org/government/dept/library/Pages/Lake-Ridge-Neighborhood-Library.aspx

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Related Posts

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SONGS WE SANG AT GAINESVILLE NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Saturday, July 12, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/14/the-songs-we-sang-at-the-gainesville-neighborhood-library-on-7122014/

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SONGS WE SANG AT INDEPENDENT HILL NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Saturday, June 28, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/04/the-songs-we-sang-at-independent-hill-neighborhood-library-in-prince-william-county-va-6282014/

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SONGS WE SANG AT DUMFRIES NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARY, Wednesday, July 9, 2014
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/07/09/the-songs-we-sang-at-dumfries-neighborhood-library-792014/

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THE SONGS WE SANG AT TUCKAHOE, CARLIN SPRINGS AND CLAREMONT ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS IN THE 2013-2014 SCHOOL YEAR

http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2014/06/29/the-many-marvelous-songs-we-sang-at-tuckahoe-claremont-and-carlin-springs-elementary-schools-in-arlington-va-in-the-2013-2014-school-year/

Eloise and I made a scratch recording for our Project PUT Theme Song:

THE PROJECT PUT THEME SONG LYRICS w guitar chords
Project PUT Theme Song: This Land for You and Me, Lyric Sheet with Guitar Chords
Sing to the Tune of “America: My Country ‘Tis of Thee”
Adapted Lyrics by Eloise and her mom
Traditional Tune
To view or print this song sheet, click here:
THE PROJECT PUT THEME SONG LYRICS w guitar chords

Sing Along with Eloise and Emily, here:

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Related Posts

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Project PUT Song List
http://projectput.wordpress.com/2014/05/31/project-put-song-list/

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Take the Project PUT Pledge and Become a Member of Project PUT
http://projectput.wordpress.com/2014/04/06/take-the-project-put-pledge-and-become-a-member-of-project-put/

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PROJECT PUT ACTION IDEAS
http://projectput.wordpress.com/put-action-ideas/

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PROJECT PUT ACHIEVEMENTS
http://projectput.wordpress.com/put-achievements/

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AMERICA: MY COUNTRY TIS OF THEE, AN ILLUSTRATED SONG
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2012/10/01/my-country-tis-of-thee-a-singable-picture-book/

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AMERICAN HISTORY: CELEBRATING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND HER CITIZENS AND TELL STORIES OF AMERICAN HISTORY
http://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/06/22/a-patriotic-list-of-singable-books-for-july-4th/

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Lyrics for Project PUT Theme Song Set to MY COUNTRY ‘TIS OF THEE Tune, Recognized by Author of Book About the Song
http://projectput.wordpress.com/2014/06/16/lyrics-for-project-put-theme-song-set-to-my-country-tis-of-thee-tune-recognized-by-author-of-book-about-the-song/

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