Come by Here, Martin Luther King by Kristin Lems on Tuneful Tuesday

We’ll start out the new school year with this lovely adaptation from member Kristin Lems.

kristin lems and autoharp

Come by Here Martin Luther King adapts the tune Kumbaya and adds to the well known remarks of Martin Luther King.  It is easy to sing and learn. I was always so moved by those inspiring words and sure enough as I said them to myself, they just nestled into the tune of Kumbaya. I didn’t try to make them fit – they just fit. Then I added two verses keeping the same format, and tweaked the tune to repeat the last line.

 I have opened many school assemblies, concerts, and events for adults, too, using this song.  I’ll also use it right after an intermission because it gets people focused while also participating.  The repetition of both the lyrics and the melody make it very easy to learn.  I sometimes gesture “up” and “down” for the pitch, to guide people in trying to sing it, which can be helpful with large crowds.  I’m always amazed at how many people can put in harmony on the very first time!

This original song appears on my album/book, Imagine that!  Songs for Creative Teachers, Carolsdatter Productions, available through my website.

Come By Here, Martin Luther King

1. Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Your words we sing,

Your words we sing.

2. Darkness cannot drive out darkness,

Darkness cannot drive out darkness,

Darkness cannot drive out darkness,

Only light can do that,

Only light can do that.

3. Hatred cannot drive out hatred,

Hatred cannot drive out hatred,

Hatred cannot drive out hatred,

Only love can do that,

Only love can do that.

4. Vengeance cannot heal our pain,

Vengeance cannot heal our pain,

Vengeance cannot heal our pain,

Only justice can do that,

Only justice can do that.

5. Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Come by here, Martin Luther King,

Your words we sing,

Your life we sing.

©2006, Kleine Ding Music (BMI) by Kristin Lems