Seven Principles

The Bird Sings Oral Tradition Song Library

Seven Principles

A powerful song from Sweet Honey in the Rock that shares and celebrates the seven principles of Kwanzaa. This is a slightly simplified but faithful version of the sheet music from J.W. Pepper.

Composer & Copyright

Original song by Bernice Johnson Reagon. Sheet music is available from J.W. Pepper.

Recording

Recording by Lisa G. Littlebird.


 

Lyrics

Callers: Umoja
Responders: Unity that brings us together
(x3)

Responders: Kuujichagulia (x5)
Callers: We will determine who we are (x3)

Callers: Ujima
Responders: Working and building our union
(x3)

Callers: Ujama
Responders: We’ll spend our money wisely
(x3)

Callers: Nia
Responders: We know the purpose of our lives
(x3)

Callers: Kuumba
Responders: All that we touch is more beautiful
(x3)

Everyone: Imani
We believe that we can
We know that we can
We will any way that we can

Teaching Notes

The moving tonalities and intricate harmonies make this an investment to learn, but Wholehearted Chorus learned one principle each week by oral tradition for seven weeks and did great!

8

Level of teaching speed/ difficulty (1 = very easy, 10 = very challenging)

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