Jennifer Margaret Barker
HomeBiographyCompositionsPurchase ScoresCD/DVDsReviewsA Lassie's Love
Waulking in the GlenTranscontinental: Music Without Borders

Email: jmbarker@udel.edu
Harmonious Dreams Song Texts


The presentation below shows only the specific lines of text that were utilized, and the order in which they were set. Omitted words in a line of text have been placed in parenthesis. Additional lines of text in the original are omitted. 


Beautiful Valley 

I am seeking a beautiful valley,
And as I am slowly descending,
It’s beauties unfold to my view.
While oft in my old native city,
I dreamed of this land far away,
I thought it a desolate region,
And dreaded the rough thorny way.

‘Tis true the descent has been rainful;
With watching and toil and great care,
I’ve been prospered this far on my journey,
And now grow content with my fare;
I find that each step I have taken,
(But) gives new experience and strength;
My courage is strong and unshaken;
I’ll gain the blest valley at length.



The Story of His Love

There’s a sweet old story which I long to hear
When the night is long and dreary;
There’s a sweet old story that I love to read
When my spirit dreads the morrow;
There’s a sweet old story that I love to tell

‘Tis the old, old story of His love,
‘Tis the sweet, old message from above;

When my spirit dreads the morrow;
Or when comfort I would borrow.
To the heart by grief o’er-taken,
And to those by hope forsaken.

‘Tis the old, old story of His love,
‘Tis the sweet, old message from above;
For no other I can find that can calm a troubled mind.
Like the sweet old story of His love!

‘Tis the old, old story of His love,
‘Tis the sweet, old message from above;

There’s a sweet old story which I love to hear…


Heaven, Heaven 

(combined text from Going to Sing All Along the Way and Gonna Shout All Over God’s Heaven)

Heaven, heaven,
Everybody talking ‘bout heaven

O, I’m going to sing, going to sing,
Going to sing all along the way;
O, I’m going to sing, going to sing, 
            Going to sing all along the way.            

I’ve got a harp, you’ve got a harp,
All of God’s children got a harp;
When I get to heaven, gonna play on my harp,
Gonna play all over God’s heaven.

I’ve got a song, you’ve got a song,
All of God’s children got a song;
When I get to heaven, gonna sing my new song,
Gonna sing all over God’s heaven.

O, I’m going to sing, going to sing,
Going to sing all along the way;
O, I’m going to sing, going to sing, 
Going to sing all along the way.



Cheyenne Prayer for Peace

For as long as the moon shall rise,
For as long as the rivers shall flow,
For as long as the sun shall shine,
(For as long) as the grass shall grow,
Let us know peace.


____________________________________________________________________







Traditional Shaker Hymn
James Rowe, Redemption Hymn
Anonymous, Spiritual
Anonymous, Native American Prayer
  - from Going to Sing All Along the Way
  - from Going to Sing All Along the Way
- from Gonna Shout All Over God’s Heaven

Program Note

In a time of worldwide unrest and migration, my thoughts turned to the dreams of peoples who, whether willing or not, became a part of the nation of America: those who sought religious freedom; those who sought a better life; those brought against their will; and those native to the land. Although from disparate walks of life, all of these people shared the same dreams of Hope, Faith, Love and Peace. In order to represent each of these peoples, I looked to the words that they not only held most dear, but that they also shared and archived through generations in communal song: hymns, spirituals and prayers. For those who sought religious freedom I chose text from the traditional Shaker hymn, Beautiful Valley. For those who sought a better life, I chose James Rowe’s Redemption hymn text, The Story of His Love. For those brought against their will, I combined text from two spirituals, Going to Sing All Along the Way and Gonna Shout All Over God’s Heaven. Finally, for those native to the land, I chose the Cheyenne Prayer for Peace

This work was composed as the result of Barker being awarded the 2017-2018 Pi Kappa Lambda Chamber Work Commission. The work was also awarded the 2022 Miriam Gideon Prize from the 
International Alliance for Women in Music.

Transcontinental: Music Without Borders was awarded 2 Silver Medals in the 2023 Global Music Awards

    Available from the following sites:

Amazon     Apple Music    Spotify     Tidal