Barbara Kingsolver '77 Collaborates with Folk Singer John McCutcheon on New Song

Barbara Kingsolver '77 Collaborates with Folk Singer John McCutcheon on New Song

January 12, 2006

barbara kingsolver.jpgJanuary 12, 2006, Greencastle, Ind. - The upcoming compact disc by Grammy Award-nominated folk singer John McCutcheon, Mightier Than the Sword, includes a collaboration with bestselling author and 1977 DePauw University graduate Barbara Kingsolver. As the San Diego Union-Tribune reports, "The idea for the album was inspired by an essay from Barbara Kingsolver's recent book, Small Wonder. The essay told of the time Kingsolver's young daughter came home from school after the 9/11 attacks and announced that everyone would be wearing red, white and blue."

The story by Marcia Manna continues, "it sparked a fire in McCutcheon's imagination, and he called the author and said, 'Listen, this is a great song waiting to be written. You can either let me steal your ideas or get on board and write it with me.' Kingsolver agreed, and together they wrote 'Our Flag Was Still There,' a song that speaks to the way Americans, despite their political preferences, can be unified by symbolism."

The article includes a sample of the song's lyrics: "For those who still dream, for those who still dare, for the scorned and forgotten, our flag is still there."

Manna adds, "The experience proved so gratifying that McCutcheon contacted other authors he revered and asked them to co-write the songs that make up Mightier Than The Sword." Other contributors include former U.S. poet laureate Rita Dove and Sister Helen Prejean, who wrote Dead Man Walking and delivered The Timothy and Sharon Ubben Lecture at DePauw in 1997.

Read the complete story at the newspaper's Web site.

Barbara Kingsolver's books include the Pulitzer Prize-nominated The Poisonwood Bible, Prodigal Summer, The Bean Trees, Small Wonder and Last Stand: America's Virgin Lands, a collaboration with National Geographic photographer Annie Griffiths Belt. She also contributed an essay to the recently released Farm Aid: A Song for America.