campfire songs

The truest expression of a people is in its dance and music. ~ Agnes de Mile

Growing up in Nova Scotia it was pretty common to sit around a campfire and share a few laughs, beers, and songs. Whether it was a wiener roast at the shore, or a fire pit at a cottage, someone was bound to do something stupid and then break into song spontaneously creating an impromptu sing-a-long. Nova Scotia has a long history of music and all it takes is one evening at a few Halifax pubs or a weekend in Cape Breton to realize Nova Scotia has its own special twist and musical influence. There are a few Nova Scotia themed songs that always seem to pop up from time to time in Nova Scotia and are a crowd pleaser, especially around campfires. For instance, Farewell to Nova Scotia, a classic song that pulls on the heartstrings of many Nova Scotians with its deep ties to the sea and sailors.

When I lived in Nova Scotia it was always a great sense of pride when a group would all sing-a-long to Farewell to Nova Scotia, it united us all around the campfire, bringing out our Nova Scotia pride. Another popular one is Barrett’s Privateers, again pulling on the heartstrings of Nova Scotians with its deep ties to the sea and sailors.

Even in a drunken stupor most Nova Scotians can still bellow out a line or two of these songs and raise their beer to toast the tune and our Nova Scotia heritage.

When I moved to Manitoba and started attending parties and campfires here in this prairie province I would listen closely to see what songs would pop up with a Manitoba theme or underlying history. So far the only one that I have seen a Manitoban crowd go wild for is “The Last Saskatchewan Pirate”.

The song is great and gives Farewell to Nova Scotia and Barrett’s Privateers a good run for its money, but the thing that gets me is the song is about Saskatchewan and not Manitoba. So Manitobans I ask you - what songs are your go to Manitoba campfire songs that create a cheering crowd, a sense of Manitoba pride, and an impromptu sing-a-long? Surely Manitoba has a few ones that touch on Manitoba, its history, and its pride?!?!?