|Getting the most out of your campfire singing|
|The Best Camping Songs|
|Teaching Guitar with the Campfire Songbook|
|Easy Guitar Song Book|
|Guitar Tab Version|
|Banjo Tab Version|
|Mandolin Tab Version|
Introduction to Camping Songs
Singing campfire songs probably goes back to before the beginnings of civilization. Back then, fire was the means of keeping warm, cooking food, and contributed to a home (or cave) atmosphere.
Picture this: Zig, the husband, has spent a hard day hunting mammoths, saber tooth tigers, or maybe something easier, like rabbits. He killed something and brought it back to the cave for the fam. His loving wife, Zag, throws it on the fire. While they wait for it to reach 175 degrees for safe eating, Zag asks Zig, "how was your day?" Zig tells her about how their hunting dog, Bingo, just about gets eaten by a saber tooth tiger, and how well he did with chasing down rabbits for dinner. After he finishes his story of the day, they stare into the fire, waiting for their dinner to cook. Zag, thinks that the word "Bingo" is a cool word, so she starts repeating it in her head, and pretty quick it starts coming from her mouth, and before you know it, she's singing a song about BINGO! Only, it wasn't a farmer, but a hunter who had the dog. Eventually, Zag convinces Zig that farming is much safer than hunting (potatoes and corn don't have fangs!), and so they change the words a little, and there you have it.
Seriously, though, we know that cowboys and pioneers coming across the plains often sang around the campfire. It was very common for at least one cowboy to have a guitar, banjo or fiddle. They would often play or sing alone. Sometimes, others would join in.
Of course, back in those days, their entertainment was what they could come up with themselves. There were no televisions, ipods, radios, etc. Today, we can hear music everywhere we go; supermarkets, elevators, malls, in movies, and in our cars. We hear it so much, that we take it for granted. It is so much easier to let someone else sing, than to sing ourselves. That is one reason campfire singing is not as popular as it once was.
Camping songs are easy to sing. The range of notes in most campfire songs is pretty easy.
I think, too, that oftentimes we compare ourselves to what we hear on the radio. Compared to the professional, our voices don't sound as good, so we don't sing! Just remember this: "If only the best birds sang, the forests would be silent."
We should not be concerned about the quality of our voices. Overcome that fear that you don't sound like Josh Groban or Faith Hill. Just participate and have fun.
Camping songs help to end the day. If you've been out hiking, skiing, fishing, or doing some other outdoor activity, it is relaxing to sing. Whether you're with friends, family, scouts or a church group, it generally brings a group closer together. It can be fun songs, silly songs, inspirational songs, or even songs that you make up.
Campfire songs bring a spirit to the campfire that you can't get any other way. Of course, that depends on the kinds of songs you sing. Leave out the songs that are depressing, degrading or have foul language. Life is too short to spend singing, or listening to songs that bring the spirit down. Instead, sing and listen to music that lifts the soul. If your life is down in the dumps, sing as if it weren't. It won't get rid of all your problems, but it will make them easier to face and deal with.
Camping songs help to form bridges across generations. The most popular camp songs are the ones we learned as children. Chances are pretty good that young and old will have at least a few songs in common. There is nothing like the sight of grandkids sitting on the knees of parents and grandparents, all singing together.
Last of all, campfire songs can be sung anywhere. You don't need a campfire, and you don't have to be outside. You can sing them at family reunions, church picnics, cub scout activities, girl scout award ceremonies, boy scout campouts, school music classes, in the car, and just about anywhere else you can think of.
Be sure to take a look at The Great American Campfire Songbook. It's a great resource; filled with over 80 of the best, most requested camping songs.
I would encourage you to get singing! Get others singing with you. Lift hearts; lift spirits and have fun!
Copyright 2009 Roger Turner- All Rights Reserved