Notes About the Music

The following notes are by Elizabeth Fulford Miller, with assistance from Andrea Blackford and
Greg Lewis.

1. Yonder Come Day (1:02)

A Georgia Sea Island “shout song” often sung during the New Year’s Eve “Watch Night Service.”
This song was accompanied by a ring shout—a praise ritual with movements rooted in West African
dance. As the song was being sung, shouters would move in a counterclockwise circle in a shuffling
motion. Traditionally, singers provided accompaniment by beating a stick on the floor, stomping
their feet, and clapping.

     Keith Moore, tenor
     Washington Revels Jubilee Voices

2. Chickens Done Crowed (1:43)

“Hollers” served as informal ways that slaves and field laborers used to sing about the general
goings-on in daily life; they also were outlets for expressing hardships and trials. This holler
signaled the beginning of the day.

     Keith Moore, tenor

3. Weeping, Sad and Lonely (4:22)
     Words: Charles Carroll Sawyer (1833-ca.1890); Music: Henry Tucker (1826-1882)

While loved ones were at war, those left at home hoped for the safe return of their husbands, sons
and sweethearts. Carrying the dedication “inscribed to sorrowing hearts at home,” this sentimental
song expressed their fear of the worst, while providing comfort and hope for reunion.

Rachel Carlson, soprano        Jacqueline Schwab, piano
Washington Revels Gallery Voices

4. Good News (1:04)
     Music: James McGranahan (1840-1907)

A 19th-century “salvation” hymn, arranged here for brass quintet.

Washington Revels Brass Quintet

5. Susannah Gals (2:12)

Bruce Molsky learned this old hoedown from the playing of Tommy Jarrell, a North Carolina
fiddler born in 1900.

Bruce Molsky, fiddle      Beverly Smith, guitar      Charlie Pilzer, bass

6. Hard Times Come Again No More (5:58)
     Words & Music: Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864)

Though written seven years before the outbreak of the American Civil War, “Hard Times” would
have renewed meaning in the decade that followed, and still remains one of the finest ballads ever
written in sympathy with the disadvantaged and poor.

Bruce Molsky, voice & fiddle      Jacqueline Schwab, piano

7. Kedron (1:28)
     Words: Charles Wesley; Music: E. K. Dare (attrib.)

The music of this hymn is attributed to the Rev. Elkanah Kelsey Dare, beginning with its
publication in John Wyeth’s Repository of Sacred Music, Part Second in 1813 (Harrisburg,
Pennsylvania), although it actually appeared 14 years earlier in the South Carolina hymnal
The United States’ Sacred Harmony (1799). The name Kedron comes from the brook between
Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives that is mentioned in the Bible.

Elisabeth Myers, soprano      Zoe Alexandratos & Jennifer Greene, altos

8. Steal Away (3:35)
     Words & Music: Wallace Willis, a Choctaw freedman (attrib.)

Spirituals were not just religious expression; they also served as a secret means of communication—sometimes even providing information to those determined to escape. During Willis’
employment at Spencer Academy, a Choctaw boarding school in Oklahoma, Minister Alexander
Reid heard Willis and his wife, Minerva, singing “Steal Away” and other plantation songs they had
learned in their youth. Reid transcribed the music and gave the songs to the Fisk University Jubilee
Singers, who popularized them in the United States and Europe.

Washington Revels Jubilee Voices

9. Tenting on the Old Camp Ground (3:28)
     Words & Music: Walter Kittredge (1834-1905)

A native New Hampshire musician and regular performer with the Hutchinson Family Singers,
Walter Kittredge penned this well-known song in 1863 after receiving notice that he had been
drafted into the army. The sentiments expressed through his words and languid melody captured
the feelings of the troops and the hope for peace. It became one of the most popular songs during
the war, selling over 10,000 copies, and earned substantial royalties for both Kittredge and the

Douglas Jimerson, tenor      Jacqueline Schwab, piano
Washington Revels Gallery Voices

10. The General (0:31)
     Bugle signal

This drum and bugle march, found in period cavalry and artillery manuals such as Joel R.
Pointsett’s Cavalry Tactics (1841) and Instruction for Field Artillery (1863), served as the signal to
strike the tents and prepare to march.

The Federal City Brass Band

11. The Enlisted Soldiers (2:13)

This martial hymn was published in Thomas Fenner, Bessie Cleaveland, and Frederic Rathbun’s
Cabin and Plantation Songs as Sung by the Hampton Students (1901). It was sung during the
recruitment and drilling of the 9th Regiment, U.S. Colored Troops in Benedict, Maryland during
the winter of 1863-1864. General Samuel Chapman Armstrong (who later founded Hampton
Institute) wrote: “The men gathered around the campfire would sing by the hour the melodies of
slave life they had just left, not always very melodious; but late one evening I was startled by a
magnificent chorus of nearly a thousand black soldiers that called me from my tent to listen to its
most inspiring strains.”

Harold Blackford, bass      Gregory McGruder, tenor
Men of the Washington Revels Heritage Ensembles

12. Battle of Shiloh Hill (4:35)
     Words: M. B. Smith (Comp. C, 2nd Reg., Texas Volunteers); Music: "Wandering Sailor" (adapt.)

One of the early major battles of the American Civil War, the Battle of Shiloh occurred in April
1862 at the river port town of Pittsburg Landing in western Tennessee. Both sides suffered
enormous casualties, with the dead and wounded numbering about one-quarter of the Union and
Confederate forces. Written by a soldier from Texas, the poem’s final prayer to God to “ the
souls of all who fell on bloody Shiloh Hill” becomes a musical benediction to all soldiers killed or
wounded in the Civil War.

Magpie (Terry Leonino & Greg Artzner)

13. August (4:29)
     Music: Pete Cooper ©1995 PRS

This poignant melody, with varying instrumentation, is a recurring and connective element in the
documentary Life in a War Zone. London fiddler Pete Cooper composed the tune during the summer
of 1995, in anticipation of a long separation. It can be found in the Master Anthology of Fiddle
Solos, Volume 1
(Mel Bay Publications, 98376 BCD).

Pete Cooper, fiddle      Frank Kilkelly, guitar

14. Lord, How Come Me Here? (1:56)

This haunting “sorrow song” expresses the loss, bewilderment, and pain felt by Africans as they
were transported from their native homes to the New World as part of the Atlantic slave trade.
Stripped of their dignity, culture, community, and language, the enslaved often turned to singing as
a principal means to express themselves.

Gregory McGruder, tenor

15. Sweet Prospect (1:28)
     Words: Samuel Stennett (1727-1795); Music: William Walker (1809 -1875)

This American folk hymn first appeared in Walker’s The Southern Harmony and Musical
, published in 1835, which remained in use both during and after the Civil War. Part of
a living tradition known as “shape-note singing,” Walker’s tune book employs a system of musical
notation where the notes are expressed in four distinct shapes, corresponding to syllables: Fa
(triangle), Sol (oval), La (square), and Mi (diamond).

Women of the Washington Revels Gallery Voices

16. Come While My Love Lies Dreaming (4:05)
     Words & Music: Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864)

Stephen Foster composed this a cappella ode to his mother upon her death in 1855. Perhaps his
most ambitious work, it was one of two pieces performed at Foster’s own funeral in 1864. When
the Civil War began three years earlier, Foster was already among the first rank of American song
composers for over a decade. In 2010 Foster was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of
Fame as America’s first professional songwriter.

Rachel Carlson, soprano      Terrance Johns, tenor
Shauna Kreidler, mezzo-soprano      Michael Lewallen, bass

17. Move Forward (0:38)
     Music: Daniel Brink Towner (1850-1919)

A rousing gospel hymn, arranged here for brass quintet.

Washington Revels Brass Quintet

18. Maryland! My Maryland! (2:00)
     Words: James Ryder Randall (1839-1908); Music: “Lauriger Horatius”

The words of this patriotic poem were written in 1861 by American journalist and poet James
Ryder Randall. When combined with the tune “Lauriger Horatius,” which is also the tune for “O
Tannenbaum” (“O Christmas Tree”), it became a rallying anthem for the South during the Civil
War. In 1939 it became the official state song of Maryland.

Douglas Jimerson, tenor      Jaqueline Schwab, piano
Washington Revels Gallery Voices

19. August (3:12)
     Music: Pete Cooper ©1995 PRS; Arrangement: Jacqueline Schwab

Jacqueline Schwab’s signature solo piano improvisations have been featured on many of Ken
Burns’ documentary films, including his acclaimed series, The Civil War.

Jacqueline Schwab, piano

20. Evening Star Waltz (2:56)

An old-time country waltz.

Bruce Molsky, fiddle      Beverly Smith, guitar      Charlie Pilzer, bass

21. The Vacant Chair (4:39)
     Words: H.S. Washburn; Music: George Frederick Root (1820-1895)

This song was written to commemorate the death of Lt. John William Grout of the 15th
Massachusetts Infantry, who was killed at the Battle of Ball’s Bluff. A student of Lowell Mason,
the founder of curricular music in American public schools, Root composed music for use in the
classroom as well as over 30 popular Civil War songs, including the well-known “The Battle Cry of
Freedom” and “Tramp! Tramp! Tramp!”

Terrance Johns, tenor      Jacqueline Schwab, piano
Washington Revels Gallery Voices

22. Salangadou (1:05)

This song from Louisiana, found in Clara Gottschalk Peterson's Creole Songs from New Orleans (1902), is a distraught mother's lament for her lost little girl.

Christina Wilson, soprano

23. Windham (1:26)
     Words: Isaac Watts (1674-1748); Music: Daniel Read (1757-1836)

One of the best known shape-note hymns, appearing in virtually every published tune book,
“Windham” combines Watts’ stark text with Read’s open harmonies to great effect in this powerful
anthem. We sing it first in “shapes” followed by two verses, with treble and tenor parts doubled in
their own octaves.

Washington Revels Gallery Voices

24. The Battle Cry of Freedom (1:24)
     Music: George Frederick Root (1825-1895)

Also known as “Rally ‘Round the Flag,” this piece was one of the most popular rallying songs of
the Union during the American Civil War.

The Federal City Brass Band

25. Oh Freedom (2:15)

“Oh Freedom” is a spiritual that was later adopted by student activists and others during the Civil
Rights movement of the 1960s. It remains an anthem for freedom, equality, and social justice to the
present day.

Azania Dungee, soprano     Gregory McGruder, tenor
Washington Revels Jubilee Voices

26. Was My Bother in the Battle? (2:41)
     Words & Music: Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864)

Foster’s songs composed during the American Civil War were some of his most poignant. Published
in 1862, “Was My Brother in the Battle?” captures the close bonds of family and a sister’s
conflicting feelings of pride and worry while her brother is away at war.

Shauna Kreidler, mezzo-soprano      Jacqueline Schwab, piano

27. Give Thanks All Ye People (2:02)
     Words & music: William Augustus Muhlenberg (1796–1877)

In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the fourth Thursday in November as a “National
Day of Thanksgiving.” This song, also known as “The President’s Hymn,” was written to honor
the new holiday. The words and music were published on the front page of Harper’s Weekly. The
arrangement for brass ensemble is by Jari Villanueva.

The Federal City Brass Band      Washington Revels Gallery Voices

28. Glory, Glory Hallelujah (4:14)

First recorded in 1928 by the Elders McIntorsh and Edwards’ Sanctified Singers, this song has
its roots in a spiritual from St. Helena Island, one of the Sea Islands of South Carolina that is
sometimes claimed to be the oldest settlement in the United States. Sung in gospel style here, the
song has been recorded by artists as diverse as Roy Acuff and his Smoky Mountain Boys and the
rock group The Byrds.

Phyllis Henderson, Keith Moore, Cheryl Lane, Gregory McGruder, Andrea Blackford, soloists
Jacqueline Schwab, piano      Washington Revels Heritage Ensemble