My Old Kentucky Home (1853) - Stephen Foster

Inspired by the loveliness of the Kentucky countryside, Foster is said to have written this famous song there in 1852 at Federal Hill in Bardstown, which was the home of Fosters relatives, the Rowans. It was made the state song of Kentucky in 1928.

       G             G7                C                  G
The sun shines bright on my old Kentucky home
       G                 A7            D7
'Tis summer, the darkies are gay
        G            G7               C                 G
The corn top's ripe and the meadow's in bloom
               Em    A7     D7              G
While the birds make music all the day
                         G7            C             G
The young folks roll on the little cabin floor
      A7                           D7
All merry, all happy and bright
         G          G7                C                      G
By 'n by hard times come a-knocking at the door
              Em        A7     D7              G
Then my old Kentucky home, good night.

G             C           G
Weep no more my lady,
      C                   G
oh weep no more today.
                          G7              C                    G
We will sing one song for the old Kentucky home,
           Em        A7    D7            G
for the old Kentucky home far away.

They hunt no more for the 'possum and the coon,
On meadow, the hill and the shore,
They sing no more by the glimmer of the moon,
On the bench by that old cabin door.
The day goes by like a shadow o'er the heart,
With sorrow where all was delight.
The time has come when the darkies have to part,
Then my old Kentucky home, good night.


The head must bow and the back will have to bend,
Wherever the darkey may go
A few more days and the trouble will end,
In the field where sugar-canes may grow.
A few more days for to tote the weary load,
No matter, 'twill never be light.
A few more days till we totter on the road,
Then my old Kentucky home, good night.


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