In an effort to make my practice more interesting and fun, I ditched learning nursery rhyme songs and looked for a tune that is more interesting to me. I found the The Battle Hymn of the Republic on String Club and decided to teach it to myself.
After copying the sheet music, I transposed it into tabs. Memorizing the notes took me a few days, and I have been playing it for the past few days. My problem with it, as with other simple songs I have learned, is that I reach a point where I can play it over and over, but I don’t see any improvement beyond a point. Tomorrow is my first lesson with my teacher after three months on my own, and I am hoping she can help me begin to unlock why I don’t seem to be able to progress with a tune beyond the “OK” point.
Everyone knows The Battle Hymn of the Republic is a very popular tune from the Civil War. This stirring anthem was written during the American Civil War by Julia Ward Howe, a leader in women’s rights and an ardent foe of slavery. Julia toured a Union Army Camp in Virginia and heard soldiers singing this tune. The music was rousing, but the words needed improvement. Julia’s pastor, who accompanied her, asked her to consider writing new and better verses. That night, after the Howes retired to their room at the Willard Hotel, the words came to her.
So, here is my current rendition of The Battle Hymn of the Republic, or should I say one of my many renditions because each time I record it I make mistakes at different parts of the song.
Here’s something else I taught myself this week. Bile’ Em Cabbage Down – Nashville Shuffle style (long-short-short). It’s getting there.