Rise Up and Sing

Hope + change through song

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Song Selection for Rise Again

We recognize that it is a very arbitrary process to select the songs for a collection of this kind.  We tried, however, to include many different songleaders & musicians help us choose these songs, just as we did when we made Rise Up Singing.  For both books this included getting together a team to discuss criteria, generate lists and then sing lots of songs together to see how well they "worked" for group singing of the type people use the books for.

Criteria the we used in this process included:

  • Difficulty of songs
  • Ease of singing in groups
  • How well known songs were
  • Balance among different song genres & subjects (with target numbers for each genre and subject matter)
  • Message - songs that are empowering and support our mission of positive change through music

In 1998 Sing Out asked us to create a songlist for a sequel to Rise Up Singing. That team worked for nearly a year. Here is a partial list of that original team:

David Andrews (Boston)
Greg Artzner (of Magpie)
Claire Brandenberg (Lancaster PA)
Joan Broadfield (Chester PA)
Sallie Gordon (Princeton NJ)
Johanna Halbeisen (New Song Library)
Sam Hinton (of San Diego – dec.)
Pat Humphries (of Emma’s Revolution)
Paul Klinkman (Providence RI)
Jeremy Korr (Los Angeles)
Sonny Ochs (sister of Phil Ochs)
Faith Petric (of San Francisco – dec.)
Sarah Pirtle (Discovery Center)
Sally Rogers (Woodstock CT)
Pete Seeger (dec.)
Kevin Slick (Denver CO)
Paul Tinkerhess (Ann Arbor MI)
Anne Wright (Hartsdale NY)


When after more than a decade Sing Out decided that they would be unable to do the book, we decided we needed to review the list in a major way. Some of the additional folks who worked on the final list in 1993 included:

Rachel Asarnow (Maplewood NJ)
Lynn Bishop (St Paul MN)
Eli Blood-Patterson (New York NY)
Ian Blood (Amherst MA)
Jack Cole (Kitchener ON)
Mary Dean (Boston)
Josh Korr (Wash DC)
Pat Lamana (Poughkeepsie NY)
Dot Patterson Lin (Bethesda MD)

See also the list of Song Genre "experts" who recommended songs from a particular song genre to go in the new book.