Sunday, August 18, 2019 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

Joseph Brackett (1797 – 1882)

American Shaker Elder and songwriter, famous as the author of the song "Simple Gifts.
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Joseph Brackett
Everyone agreed that this is a song all Americans should be able to sing. It was a hands-down favorite among teachers. And I've talked with kids in elementary and high schools about it, too. Any youngster can tell you what this song means: Simplicity is sometimes better than complexity, and we shouldn't take ourselves too seriously.
Brackett quotes
The man who wrote this claimed it came to him by divine inspiration, and I truly believe that might have been the case. This may be the perfect piece of music. I've sung it close to 15,000 times over the years, and I never get tired of it.
'Tis the gift to be simple, 'tis the gift to be free,
     'Tis the gift to come down where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
     'Twill be in the valley of love and delight.

Brackett Joseph quotes
The Music Educators National Conference the professional organization for American music teachers named it among a handful of songs that every American should know. Teachers ranked it right up there with the "National Anthem," "Battle Hymn of the Republic" and "Home on the Range."
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