Last modified on 25 August 2014, at 12:39

Joseph Brackett

'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.

Joseph Brackett, Jr. (6 May 17974 July 1882) was an American Shaker Elder and songwriter, famous as the author of the song "Simple Gifts."

QuotesEdit

When true simplicity is gain'd
To bow and to bend we shan't be asham'd,
To turn, turn will be our delight
'Till by turning, turning we come round right.

Simple Gifts (1848)Edit

  • '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.

    When true simplicity is gain'd
         To bow and to bend we shan't be asham'd,
    To turn, turn will be our delight
         'Till by turning, turning we come round right.

Quotes about Brackett or "Simple Gifts"Edit

  • 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.
    • Randy Folger, who sang the song each weekday for visitors at the "Shaker Village" in Pleasant Hill, Kentucky.
  • I don’t think he was musically trained, as far as I can tell from my research. There isn’t a lot of background material to find on this question, but I do believe that he picked up music as it was passed to him through the community. They felt it was a communal gift to be able to write music, a gift from God. They wrote about the experience as having inspirationally received a song.

External linksEdit

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