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Shaker hymn? (was 'Babe')

Related threads:
(origins) Lyr Req/Add: If I Had Words (from the film 'Babe') (31)
song from film "Babe" (10) (closed)
Babe, the movie (8) (closed)

mm 29 Jun 98 - 01:59 PM 29 Jun 98 - 08:22 PM
29 Jun 98 - 09:22 PM
T. in Oklahoma 13 Jul 98 - 03:13 PM
GUEST,Susette 19 Apr 09 - 01:50 AM
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Subject: Shaker hymn? (was
From: mm
Date: 29 Jun 98 - 01:59 PM

Sorry to retitle the thread, but I thought people might not read the "Babe" thread ;)

Does anyone know if the song from the film Babe was, as I've been told, a Shaker hymn?

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Subject: Lyr Add: SIMPLE GIFTS
Date: 29 Jun 98 - 08:22 PM

I saw "Babe", but I don't remember the music. Could you hum the first few bars :)

The most famous Shaker Hymn is "'Tis a Gift to be Simple" whose theme was used in one of Copeland's compositions. There is a Dover book "The Gift to be Simple" by Edward Deming Andrews (Dover 0-486-20022-1) which gives words and tunes (in standard notation) for Shaker songs and Dances.

The words to the famous one--actually called "Simple Gifts" is

Tis a gift to be simple, 'tis a gift to be free
'Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right
'Twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gain'd
To bend and bow, we shan't be ashamed
To turn, turn, will be our delight
'Till by turning and turning we come round again.

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Subject: RE: Shaker hymn? (was
Date: 29 Jun 98 - 09:22 PM

Quite unlikely it's a Shaker hymn, wrong sentiments. The Shaker hymns are about giving thanks, and appreciating what one has received. The Shaker's were (almost were...) a fascinating group on many counts, but this tune from Babe is surely a love song or lullaby! I'll check back to see if anyone has solved it.

This month's Sing Out! magazine has an extensive article on Shaker hymns. Check it out!

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Subject: RE: Shaker hymn? (was
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 13 Jul 98 - 03:13 PM

If you mean the song, "If I had words", the melody is taken from the last movement of Saint-Saens's 3d ("organ") symphony. The words, I think, were written for the film.

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Subject: RE: Shaker hymn? (was "Babe")
From: GUEST,Susette
Date: 19 Apr 09 - 01:50 AM

The melody is from the Saint-Saens "Organ Symphony", and the words...well, there's a video going back to the 1970's with people singing those words. Scott Fitzgerald and Yvonne Keeley. It was apparently quite popular in Holland. The lyrics are by Jonathan Hodge, who was a prolific jingle writer. (Probably why the lyrics are short, simple, and catchy).

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