I always used to enjoy playing this song. And every time I play it, I enjoy it again. I thought it was a written song. But, oh no. It’s a folk song from the year of 1862 or so, first sung as an anthem by the “Contrabands”, the escaped slaves, who eventually joined the Union army. It was most famously recorded by Paul Robeson. I knew it as a kid, associating it with the the Cecil B. De Mille, Charlton Heston-in-orange  Ten Commandments movie.  As we celebrate the Shavuoth holiday tomorrow – which marks the conclusion to the Passover/Exodus story (the receiving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai), we recall the struggle to escape from slavery to freedom.

When Israel was in Egypt land
Let my people go
Oppressed so hard they could not stand
Let my people go

Go down, Moses
Way down in Egypt land
Tell old pharoah
To let my people go

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