Studio recorded versions of eighteen school songs now available from NCF
THIRTEEN SECONDARY schools and five primary schools now have studio recorded versions of their school songs.
This, as the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) moved into the second phase of their Vincentian Patriotic and School Songs project.
The first phase was the launch of the Vincentian Patriotic and School Songs book on September 15 and according to the Chairman of the NCF Wollis Christopher, this second phase, launched at the Peace Memorial Hall on Friday October 2, has now given music teachers an example of how the songs should be sung.
He said the publication helps to preserve the work of Vincentian composers like Alban Henry, Ebenezer Duncan and Pat Prescod, many of whom have passed on.
“We don’t know much about them so this is helping create awareness of the work they performed and preserving their work for future generations,” Christopher said.
Christopher noted that when he taught music at the primary school level, it was problematic trying to teach students the school and patriotic songs.
“It was a problem trying to get the songs to teach students and sometimes when you find them, you don’t know how to sing them or you feel you might not be good enough to sing,” Christopher explained.
He said this initiative has made those problems a thing of the past because it gives the lyrics, the music and the actual singing of the songs. The publication has a Quick Response or QR code that can be read by a digital device like a cellular phone.
Explaining the QR code function, Director of the NCF Junior Sutherland said when you open the book, you can use a digital device to scan the QR code and a link will pop up that can take you to a Google drive.
The Google drive contains an addendum and folders with the school songs and a folder with the patriotic songs. The addendum has a one word change
to the St Vincent Grammar School (SVGS) song as the publishers forgot to put it in the publication and an additional school song by Yvonne Francis Gibson.
Sutherland noted that if a person doesn’t have a smart device, there is a type short Uniform Resource Locator (URL) on the card.
“You have no excuse not to have songs at your disposal,” Sutherland said while noting that the third phase is on October 18 when the Police Force Band will do live performances of all the songs. This session will be recorded and the live performance audio will be placed inside the Google drive so the schools can access them.
Sutherland said that what this means is that there are now recorded studio versions and there will be live versions.
“So you can use them at official school and sporting functions…recordings to play at interschool sports during medal presentations..,” Sutherland said.
The songs are sung in four parts — alto, tenor, base and soprano by persons like Cecile “Lil Bit” Murray, Atiba Abbott and Junior Sutherland.
“This is a true representation of Vincentian patriotism in song,” said Sutherland while noting that school songs are the first line of inculcating patriotism and the NCF sees the project as a literal example of uplifting Vincentian culture.