Scouting Songs for Viola

Scouting Songs for Viola

A collection of traditional Scouting songs in special arrangements for Viola and piano. Easy to Intermediate Level

1.   Old MacDonald Had a Farm


The perennially popular "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" was probably written by the English composer Thomas d'Urfey for his 1706 opera "The Kingdom of the Birds," though it may have existed in the folk tradition before this time. The version we know today, about a farmer and the various animals he keeps, was standardised in the twentieth century. Often taught to very young children, its hilarity, engendered especially by the impersonation of animal noises, makes it great fun for all ages!


Old MacDonald had a farm
And on his farm he had a cow
With a moo moo here
And a moo moo there
Here a moo, there a moo
Everywhere a moo moo
Old MacDonald had a farm

Old MacDonald Had a Farm

2.   This Old Man


"This Old Man" is an English language children's song, counting exercise and nursery rhyme. The origins of this song are obscure. The earliest extant record is a version noted in Anne Gilchrist's Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society (1937), learned from her Welsh nurse in the 1870s under the title "Jack Jintle"

This old man, he played one,
He played knick-knack on my thumb;
With a knick-knack paddywhack,
Give a dog a bone,
This old man came rolling home.

This Old Man

3.   Coming round the mountain


"She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain" (also sometimes called simply "Coming 'Round the Mountain") is a traditional African-American folk song often categorized as children's music. It is a derivation of a "spiritual" song known as "When the Chariot Comes." It is popular as a campfire and Scouting song.

She’ll be coming ’round the mountain when she comes, when she comes
She’ll be coming ’round the mountain when she comes
She’ll be coming ’round the mountain,
She’ll be coming ’round the mountain
She’ll be coming ’round the mountain when she comes.

Coming round the mountain

4.   Kum Ba Yah


"Kum ba yah" is an African American spiritual song first recorded in the 1920s. It is though to have emerged in the Gullah speaking population in the Southeastern United States. More serious in mood than many standard campfire and Scouting songs, it nevertheless enjoyed broader popularity during the folk revival of the 1950s and 1960s.

Kum ba ya, my Lord, kum ba ya;
Kum ba ya, my Lord, kum ba ya;
Kum ba ya, my Lord, kum ba ya,
O Lord, kum ba ya.

Kum Ba Yah

5.   Chant de la Promesse


The lyrical "Chant de la Promesse" was composed by the priest Jacques Sevin for the French Scouting movement. Through it a scout or group of scouts promise to be faithful to God and to their country. Sevin was a key figure in the scouting movement, founding the Scouts de France in 1920 and writing the book "Le Scoutisme.'


Devant tous je m'engage
Sur mon honneur,
Et je te fais hommage
De moi, Seigneur !

Chant de la Promesse

6.   Au Revoir Camarade (French Trad.)


A lyrical French folk song for more melancholic campfire moments. The words are from the perspective of a person bidding goodbye to a comrade, presumably fallen in battle. The singer bids that the Lord protect their friend and that the Virgin shows them "the way to the stars.'


Au revoir camarade, que le Seigneur te protège
Sur la route où veillera ton ange.
Que la Vierge te montre le chemin des étoiles
Où nous nous retrouverons demain.
Que la Vierge te montre le chemin des étoiles
Où nous nous retrouverons demain.

Au Revoir Camarade (French Trad.)

7.   Fire's Burning (Round)


"Fire's Burning" is a US campfire song that derives from the English folksong "London's Burning." Both are rounds, their tunes being identical until the final phrase. The British folksong is thought to be about the 1666 Great Fire of London, which led to the destruction of the medieval part of the city including old St. Paul's Cathedral.


Fire’s burning, fire’s burning,
Draw nearer, draw nearer,
In the gloaming, in the gloaming,
Come sing and be merry.

Fire's Burning (Round)

8.   You'll Never Get to Heaven (Scouting Trad.)


"You'll Never Get to Heaven" is a humourous call and response campfire and Scouting song. It describes the various comical ways a person is unlikely to get to heaven, including on an"old Ford car" on a "biscuit tin" and on "water skis." The exact lyrics are by no means fixed, with improvised verses encouraged!


Oh, you’ll never get to Heaven on a boy scout’s knee
'Cause a boy scout’s knee’s too knobbly.
I ain’t gonna grieve my Lord no more.

You'll Never Get to Heaven (Scouting Trad.)

9.   Ten in the Bed


"Ten in the Bed" is a counting song of uncertain origin. Its comic scenario and infectious infectious melody has not only made it popular for teaching very young children to count, but also around campfires and amongst Scouts and Girl Guides. There exist two versions of the song, one which ends at "So they all rolled over and one fell out" before repeating and this one, which includes the refrain "Please remember to tie a knot in your pyjamas..."


There were ten in the bed
And the little one said, "Roll over, roll over"
So they all rolled over and one fell out.
He hit the floor and gave a shout:
“Please remember, to tie a knot in your pyjamas,
Single beds are only made for…”

Ten in the Bed

10.   The Other Day I Met a Bear


"The Other Day I Met a Bear" is a traditional American camp and Scouting echo song. The melody, written by Carey Morgan and Lee David in 1919 was originally written for a different set of lyrics "Sipping Cider Through a Straw."

The other day, (The other day,)
I met a bear, (I met a bear,)
A great big bear, (A great big bear,)
A way out there! (A way out there!)
The other day I met a bear,
A great big bear a way out there.

The Other Day I Met a Bear

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