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The Music Of The Grand Canyon

 
Grand Canyon Songs

 


For two years, I had the privilege to raft through the Grand Canyon. Each spring a group of scientists with the Grand Canyon National Park Foundation, travel the Colorado River while they study the wildlife and ecology of the river and canyon. These songs were written during those two trips.

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Jim in the Canyon

 
1. In The Grand Canyon
2. Raul The Raven
3. Can I Have A Glass Of Water
4. The River
5. Owls Of The Conyon
6. The Boatmen
7. Murcielago
8. The Otter Song
9. Hug A Tree
10. Layers of Earth Like Layers of Life
11. In The Grand Canyon (Reprise)

Pam in the Canyon
 
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 In The Grand Canyon

Oh Arizona, you are my home,
Larger than life, so grandiose,
Stretching forever, cut by a river.

From the rim for nine mile, our nature unveils,
A winding adventure, on Bright Angle Trail,
It’s the grand one, it’s the Grand Canyon.

I hope that our kids, can do what we did,
Hike Indian Gardens, then Phantom Ranch,
Float down towards Diamond, run Lava Falls.

In the Grand Canyon, in the Grand Canyon,
Leave only footprints, take only photos,
Nature has opened the doors and the windows,
In the Canyon, in the Grand Canyon,
Something so true about you and me too.

Life on the river, is rushing and wild,
And then it gets smoother, all glassy and quite,
It’s a long ride, oh and that river.

It’ll bounce you and bump you, you scream and you cry,
Be sure to remember, hold on for dear life,
It’ll rock you, the river delivers.

I hope that our kids can do what we did,
Hike Indian Gardens, then Phantom Ranch,
Float down towards Diamond, and run Lava Falls.

In the Grand Canyon, hike the Grand Canyon,
Leave only footprints, take only photos,
Nature has opened the doors and the windows,
In the Canyon, hike the Grand Canyon,

Oh Arizona, you are my home,
At night there’s a million stars in the sky,
You see the heavens, and you close your eyes,
The river is playing, a sweet lullaby, lullaby.

You see that waterfall, you feel the wind,
Whitewater will spray you, it doesn’t matter my friend,
You might be 80, you might be 10,
You want to do it again.

In the Grand Canyon, hike the Grand Canyon,
Leave only footprints, take only photos,
Nature has opened the doors and the windows,
In the Canyon, hike the Grand Canyon,
There’s something so true about you.

In the Grand Canyon, float the Grand Canyon,
Leave only footprints, take only photos,
Look how the water flows, feel how the wind blows,
In the Canyon, float the Grand Canyon,
There’s something so true about you and me to.

Something so true about you.
Oh Arizona you are my home.

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Raul The Raven

I come to visit each campsite
I come to see that you’re all right
I come to steal what you might like
Raul a Raven in the night

I drop on in when you’re asleep
I help myself to something sweet
I'm looking for a snack to eat
Raul a Raven in the night

Thank-you please…. I’m sneaking up on you
But you can’t see me…
I’m just a scavenger but I’ve got needs….
And you will never know…it’s me...(squawk)

I’m dark and handsome in the sky
I’m not an ordinary guy
You can float but I can fly
Raul a Raven in the night

Crunchy Cheetos… that you were saving
5 pound cheese logs that I was craving
Cold fajitas and warm burritos too
I’m hungry how bout’ you!!!!

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 Can I Have A Glass Of Water

Can I have a glass of water, Can I have a glass of water, Cool clean water

Oh that river runs cold (about 50 degrees)
And the river runs deep (about 80 feet)
Oh the river runs long (all the way from Colorado)
To the deep blue sea (the Sea of Cortez)
And it flows through the valleys (and all the animals drink)
Makes the crops green (and all the cottonwood trees)
And it flows through the dams (and it’s life for the fishies)
For electricity (for you and me)

Can a river flow forever (it remains to be seen)
As we continue to grow (it better be clean)
If we could use a little less (electricity)
It might help that river (that would be neat)
So thanks to the river (which flows to the sea)
And thanks to the stream (where the fishies breath)
And thanks for the canyon (oh so gorgeous)
So grand to see (we better keep it clean)

Can I have a glass of water, Can I have a glass of water, Cool clean water

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 Owls Of The Canyon

From the beginning of time, we have thought them to be wise
They can see so much better, when there’s no light in the evening
With those great big eyes
And as the world gets smaller, it’s no big surprise
The owls in the canyon, need some help for mankind
If they’re to stay alive
Hoot Hoot Hoot

Chorus
The Mexican Spotted, and the Little Bitty Pygmy
The Long Eared, and the Short Eared
The Great Horned Flamulated, are some names of owls
And they search at night, for prey like mice
And they have these special feathers, that lock and come together
And they come gliding by so quiet
Hoot Hoot Hoot

So they may be wise, for us to think that is nice
Majestic in their make up, so fragile when we shake up
Their wildlife lives
So remember the style, of the wise old owl
Don’t take them for granted, they live here on the planet
Just like you and me

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 The Boatmen

The boatmen float the canyon, in a way that they embrace
They carry those who study, all the ways to save this place
Lee’s Ferry is the jump off, but they jumped off long ago
Somewhere on their journey, someone taught them what they know

Chorus
They are the boatmen
They float down the canyon
Rapidly, then they do it again
They are the boatmen
They float down the canyon
A splash and a spin
Rapids are friends

Whitewater rushed through the canyons
Like blood runs through their veins
Susie, loves the sunrise
For Bird, its a Pepsi day
Whitewater rushing through the canyons
Look into their eyes
The boatman are the stewards, they made a difference in my life

And it all looks so amazing, Elaine says it just that way
But like life it is so fragile, we could all just float away
So listen to the boatmen, and the way they carry on
The oars slice through the water, you can hear the boatmen song

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 Murcielago

Murcielago where did you go
Murcielago, turn the fire way down low
Murcielago, means bat in Espanol
Murcielago, it’s all about your home

And your home is where it’s cool in a cave
And it’s dark and you’re just waiting for the shade
And you come out late and sip from a pool
And your radar/sonar helps you find your way that’s very cool

Murcielago, where did you go
Murcielago, turn the fire down low
Murcielago, means bat in Espanol
Murcielago, it’s all about your home

The Red, the Spotted and the Mastiff,
The Pips because they’re tiny, they never sang for gladys
The Free Tails and the Miotis are just a few
And as bats when your are hungry you grab another bug

Murcielago, where did you go
Murcielago, turn the fire down low
Murcielago, means bat in Espanol
Murcielago, it’s all about your home in the Grand Canyon
More-thee-a-lago

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 The Otter Song

Chorus
Well they otter be here, but it seems they slipped away
Otters used to live here, on the Colorado River
Wouldn’t it be grand, it’d be Mother Nature’s way
A little otter heaven, in God’s Grand Canyon

They’re cute little otters, with mischievous ways
they love to make their dinner, of the fish fillets
but the Humpback Chub, ain’t their favorite grub
they’re looking for a Rainbow, on a sunny day

He’s got a wildlife job, and his name is Tom
He’s always looking in the water, he doesn’t see them but he otter
He comes from way back east, where they are thick as thieves
He likes playing in the water, and looking for the otter

And it’s just like a circle, with no beginning or end
And if we have to start all over, they’ll be here again
So come around full circle, before any dams
And think about the otter, in the grand canyon lands

And it’s a great big deal, happens once in a lifetime
Well we drove them away, we can bring em’ back again
And they’re not even human, but they’re so acrobatic
They could play in the sun, in the Grand Canyon again

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 Hug A Tree

Now what we have here are the reactions some ranger might have had to some questions from folks like you and me...

Chorus
Hug a tree, look for a Condor, take a hike or your just like me
To see the Grand Canyon, can be very exciting
Are the presidents faces carved on a rim
The ranger just smiles, and looks back at them
(Will my high heals get dirty, are the burros my friends)
(Is it just as far up, as it is down from the rim)

He’s a wildlife biologist, with many a degree
A lawyer, a doctor, and a former marine
Runnin’ the river, riding the herd
Answering questions, and some are absurd
Answering questions, and looking for birds

Well it’s hot in the sun, and it’s cool in the shade
Some Pringles some Pepsi, we’ve got it made
We’re headed down canyon, about 200 miles
Mount Rushmore has gone missing, and the ranger just smiles

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 Layers Of The Earth

Layers of the earth like, layers of life
Lining the canyon river left and river right
For thousands of years for thousands of feet
Vischnu Schitz the Red Wall Tapeats
The Bright Angel Shale so sweet

Winding for almost 300 miles
Its takes you 3 weeks and it takes you a while
Til you can’t hear machinery you just hear the smiles
Just folks remembering what it was once like
When they were little girls and boys

Chorus
When I see the signs I remember the Zorro Astor Granite
The Vischnu Schitz…. the Red Wall Tapeats….. and the Bright Angel Shale
When I need a line I remember my friends floating down through the canyon so grand
They are there in my mind in the canyon to throw me a line

Layers of earth like layers of life
The river took forever to carve out this site
And we’ll all be long gone they’ll be others that sigh
When they see what this river has done to this canyon
And they look back on their own layers of life

When I see the signs I remember
The Supai Coconino and Tapeats Sandstone
When I see the signs I remember the Taroweap Formation
When I need a line I remember my friends floating down through the canyon so grand
They are there in my mind to throw me to throw me a line

Layers of earth like layers of life
You find your own river flowin’ inside
It all comes together like a Lava Falls ride
Hold on to your guideline
Hold on to your lifeline and follow the river through life

When I see the signs I remember
The Zorro Astor Granite
The Vischnu Schitz the Red Wall Tapeats and the Bright Angel Shale
When I need a line I remember my friends floating down through the canyon so grand
They are there in my mind in the canyon to throw me a line
They are there in my mind in Grand Canyon time

Layers of earth like layers of life