Stephen Foster

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    Biographical information

  1. Beautiful Dreamer, Serenade
  2. Gwine To Run All Night, Or De Camptown Races
  3. Jeanie With The Light Brown Hair
  4. My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night!
  5. Oh Susana!
  6. Old Black Joe
  7. Old Dog Tray
  8. Old Folks At Home




    Biographical information

      Name: Stephen Collins Foster
      Place and date of birth: Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania (United States); July 4, 1826
      Place and date of death: New York (United States); January 13, 1864 (aged 37)

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      Beautiful Dreamer, Serenade

        Beautiful dreamer, wake unto me,
        Starlight and dewdrops are waiting for thee;
        Sounds of the rude world heard in the day,
        Lull'd by the moonlight have all pass'd away!.

        Beautiful dreamer, queen of my song,
        List while I woo thee with soft melody;
        Gone are the cares of life's busy throng,
        Beautiful dreamer, awake unto me!.

        Beautiful dreamer, out on the sea
        Mermaids are chaunting the wild lorelie;
        Over the streamlet vapors are borne,
        Waiting to fade at the bright coming morn.

        Beautiful dreamer, beam on my heart,
        E'en as the morn on the streamlet and sea;
        Then will all clouds of sorrow depart,
        Beautiful dreamer, awake unto me!.

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      Gwine to Run All Night, or De Camptown Races

        De Camptown ladies sing dis song -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        [Solo] De Camp-town race-track five miles long -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah day!
        [Solo] I come down dah wid my hat caved in -- Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        I go back home wid a pocket full of tin -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah day!.

        Gwine to run all night!
        Gwine to run all day!
        I'll bet my money on de bob-tail nag --
        Somebody bet on de bay.

        [Solo] De long tail filly and de big black hoss -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        [Solo] Dey fly de track and dey both cut across -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!
        [Solo] De blind hoss sticken in a big mud hole -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        [Solo] Can't touch bottom wid a ten foot pole -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!.

        Gwine to run all night!
        Gwine to run all day!
        I'll bet my money on de bob-tail nag --
        Somebody bet on de bay.

        [Solo] Old muley cow come on to de track -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        [Solo] De bob-tail fling her ober his back -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!
        [Solo] Den fly along like a rail-road car -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        [Solo] Runnin' a race wid a shootin' star -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!.

        Gwine to run all night!
        Gwine to run all day!
        I'll bet my money on de bob-tail nag --
        Somebody bet on de bay.

        See dem flyin' on a ten mile heat -- [Chorus] Doo-dah doo-dah!
        Round de race track, den repeat -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!
        I win my money on de bob-tail nag -- [Chorus] Doo-dah! doo-dah!
        I keep my money in an old tow-bag -- [Chorus] Oh! doo-dah-day!.

        Gwine to run all night!
        Gwine to run all day!
        I'll bet my money on de bob-tail nag --
        Somebody bet on de bay.

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      Jeanie With The Light Brown Hair

        I dream of Jeanie with the light brown hair,
        Borne, like a vapor, on the summer air;
        I see her tripping where the bright streams play,
        Happy as the daisies that dance on her way.
        Many were the wild notes her merry voice would pour,
        Many were the blithe birds that warbled them o'er:
        Oh! I dream of Jeanie with the light brown hair,
        Floating, like a vapor, on the soft summer air.

        I long for Jeanie with the daydawn smile,
        Radiant in gladness, warm with winning guile;
        I hear her melodies, like joys gone by,
        Sighing round my heart o'er the fond hopes that die:
        Sighing like the night wind and sobbing like the rain,
        Wailing for the lost one that comes not again:
        Oh! I long for Jeanie, and my heart bows low,
        Never more to find her where the bright waters flow.

        I sigh for Jeanie, but her light form strayed
        Far from the fond hearts round her native glade;
        Her smiles have vanished and her sweet songs flown,
        Flitting like the dreams that have cheered us and gone.
        Now the nodding wild flowers may wither on the shore
        While her gentle fingers will cull them no more:
        Oh! I sigh for Jeanie with the light brown hair,
        Floating, like a vapor, on the soft summer air.

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      My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night!

        The sun shines bright in the old Kentucky home,
        'Tis summer, the darkies are gay,
        The corn top's ripe and the meadow's in the bloom
        While the birds make music all the day.
        The young folks roll on the little cabin floor,
        All merry, all happy and bright:
        By'n by Hard Times comes a knocking at the door,
        Then my old Kentucky Home, good night!.

        [Chorus] Weep no more, my lady, oh! weep no more to-day!
        We will sing one song
        For the old Kentucky Home,
        For the old Kentucky Home, far away.

        [Solo] They hunt no more for the possum and the coon
        On the meadow, the hill and the shore,
        They sing no more by the glimmer of the moon,
        On the bench by the 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!.

        [Chorus] Weep no more, my lady, oh! weep no more to-day!
        We will sing one song
        For the old Kentucky Home,
        For the old Kentucky Home, far away.

        [Solo] The head must bow and the back will have to bend,
        Wherever the darkey may go:
        A few more days, and the trouble all will end
        In the field where the sugar-canes 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!.

        [Chorus] Weep no more, my lady, oh! weep no more to-day!
        We will sing one song
        For the old Kentucky Home,
        For the old Kentucky Home, far away.

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      Oh Susana!

        I came from Alabama
        wid my ban jo on my knee,
        I'm g'wan to Louisiana,
        My true love for to see,
        It raind all night the day I left
        The weather it was dry,
        The sun so hot I frose to death
        Susanna dont you cry.
        [Chorus] Oh! Susanna Oh! dont you cry for me
        I've come from Alabama wid mi ban jo on my knee.
        [Solo] I jumped aboard de telegraph,
        And trabbelled down de riber,
        De Lectric fluid magnified,
        And Killed five Hundred Nigger
        De bullgine buste, de horse run off,
        I realy thought I'd die;
        I shut my eyes to hold my breath,
        Susana, dont you cry.
        [Chorus] Oh! Susana Oh! dont you cry for me
        I've come from Alabama wid mi ban jo on my knee.
        [Solo] I had a dream de odder night,
        When ebery ting was still;
        I thought I saw Susana,
        A coming down de hill.
        The buckwheat cake war in her mouth,
        The tear was in her eye,
        Says I, im coming from de South,
        Susana, dont you cry.
        [Chorus] Oh! Susana Oh! dont you cry for me
        I've come from Alabama wid mi ban jo on my knee.
        [Solo] I soon will be in New Orleans,
        And den I'll look all round,
        And when I find Susana,
        I'll fall upon the ground.
        But if I do not find her,
        Dis darkie 'l surely die,
        And when I'm dead and buried,
        Susana, dont you cry.
        [Chorus] Oh! Susana Oh! dont you cry for me
        I've come from Alabama wid mi ban jo on my knee.

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      Old Black Joe

        Gone are the days when my heart was young and gay,
        Gone are my friends from the cotton fields away,
        Gone from the earth to a better land I know,
        I hear their gentle voices calling 'Old Black Joe.'

        [Chorus] I'm coming, I'm coming, for my head is bending low:
        I hear those gentle voices calling, 'Old Black Joe.'

        [Solo] Why do I weep when my heart should feel no pain
        Why do I sigh that my friends come not again,
        Grieving for forms Now departed long a go?
        I hear their gentle voices calling 'Old Black Joe.'

        [Chorus] I'm coming, I'm coming, for my head is bending low:
        I hear those gentle voices calling, 'Old Black Joe.'

        [Solo] Where are the hearts once so happy and so free?
        The children so dear that I held upon my knee,
        Gone to the shore where my soul has longed to go.
        I hear their gentle voices calling 'Old Black Joe.'

        [Chorus] I'm coming, I'm coming, for my head is bending low:
        I hear those gentle voices calling, 'Old Black Joe.'

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      Old Dog Tray

        The morn of life is past,
        And ev'ning comes at last;
        It brings me a dream of a once happy day,
        Of merry forms I've seen
        Upon the village green,
        Sporting with my old dog Tray.

        Chorus:
        Old dog Tray's ever faithful;
        Grief cannot drive him away;
        He's gentle, he is kind,
        I'll never, never find
        A better friend than old dog Tray.

        The forms I called my own
        Have vanish'd one by one,
        The lov'd ones, the dear ones have all pass'd away;
        Their happy smiles have flown,
        Their gentle voices gone,
        I've nothing left but old dog Tray.

        Chorus.

        When thoughts recall the past,
        His eyes are on me cast,
        I know that he feels what my breaking heart would say;
        Although he cannot speak,
        I'll vainly, vainly seek
        A better friend than old dog Tray.

        Chorus.

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      Old Folks At Home

        Way down upon de Swanee ribber,
        Far, far away,
        Dere's wha my heart is turning ebber,
        Dere's wha de old folks stay.
        All up and down de whole creation,
        Sadly I roam,
        Still longing for de old plantation,
        And for de old folks at home.

        [Chorus] All de world am sad and dreary,
        Ebry where I roam,
        Oh! darkeys how my heart grows weary,
        Far from de old folks at home.

        [Solo] All round de little farm I wandered
        When I was young,
        Den many happy days I squandered,
        Many de songs I sung.
        When I was playing wid my brudder
        Happy was I --.
        Oh! take me to my kind old mudder,
        Dere let me live and die.

        [Chorus] All de world am sad and dreary,
        Ebry where I roam,
        Oh! darkeys how my heart grows weary,
        Far from de old folks at home.

        One little hut among de bushes,
        One dat I love,
        Still sadly to my mem'ry rushes,
        No matter where I rove
        When will I see de bees a humming
        All round de comb?
        When will I hear de banjo tumming
        Down in my good old home?.

        [Chorus] All de world am sad and dreary,
        Ebry where I roam,
        Oh! darkeys how my heart grows weary,
        Far from de old folks at home.

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