SONGS OF THE RED, WHITE, AND BLUE…
With Memorial Day and July 4th just around the corner, we’ll soon be surrounded with fireworks and patriotic music “bursting in air.” I found a list of the ten top patriotic songs for children and wanted to share it with you. When kids are exposed to these songs at a young age, they’ll carry them with them for the rest of their lives.
1/ The Star Spangled Banner (1814) Lyrics by Francis Scott Key & Melody by John Stafford Smith. There is no more patriotic a song for kids to learn than the American National Anthem. Not only is it the official song of our country, but it also tells a historical story about a critical battle in the War of 1812. Check out Lee Greenwood’s version.
2/ Yankee Doodle (1770) Trad. Believe it or not, this familiar children’s song is the state anthem of Connecticut! Read more about the song’s origins.
And here’s a recording of the song: https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;
3/ (I’m A) Yankee Doodle Dandy (1904) By George M. Cohan from the Broadway musical “Little Johnny Jones.”
Listen to Barney & Friends sing it: https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;
4/ America (My Country ‘Tis of Thee) (1831) Lyrics by Samuel Francis Smith; Melody same as “God Save the Queen.” Smith penned these lyrics while at the Andover Theological Seminary in Andover, MA. There are 13 verses!
Check out Yolanda Adams singing it.
5/ Hail to the Chief (1812) Lyrics by Sir Walter Scott; Melody by James Sanderson – This piece – the official presidential anthem of the U.S. – is played to honor the president when he walks into a room. I never knew there were words to this song.
Here they are (along with the music): https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;
Read about the interesting history of this song:
6/ God Bless America (1918) By Irving Berlin (and later revised by him in 1938) This patriotic song takes the form of a prayer. Kate Smith’s inpretation of the song is most famous, but I think Celine Dion’s version is really beautiful. Here it is: https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;
7/ America, the Beautiful (1895) Lyrics by Katharine Lee Bates; Music by Samuel A. Ward
Read about the inspired history of this song:
Love, love, love Ray Charles singing this!
8/ You’re a Grand Old Flag (1906) By George M. Cohan from the Broadway musical, “George Washington, Jr.” Again, there’s an interesting story about how Cohan was inspired to write this song. Read about it here.
My 3-year-old nephew LOVES to sing this song! Here’s a sing-along version for you guys:
9/ This Land is Your Land (1940) By Woody Guthrie
I don’t think I’ve ever heard this song performed better than in Peter, Paul and Mary’s original version.
10/ Stars and Stripes Forever (1896) By (the great American composer) John Philip Sousa
He composed this song as a tribute to the country and the flag. It’s the “march” of all marches!
Did I say TEN top songs? Here are 2 more bonus songs to check out – both amazing patriotic songs by modern-day songwriters.
America by Neil Diamond:
God Bless the USA by Lee Greenwood: https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;
Happy stars and stripes season to you all. Be inspired!