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There is a scene in Fannie Lou Musical in which a 12-year-old boy asserts his being. He’s seen and heard what the grown-ups have been going through as they fight for the right to vote. The right to make their own decisions. To determine their own futures. To live their own lives. To, quite simply, grow.

The struggle has reached a boiling point, and the young boy decides to take a stand. Regardless of the roadblocks placed in front of him, he says, he is determined to grow. Not just grow up physically into adulthood, although that certainly is an essential part of his assertion. He also promises that he will grow mentally, intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, individually, socially and any other way that will enhance his human existence. He does not ask permission for the opportunity to grow. He insists on it.

As he makes his decision, he sings the song “I Will Grow.” It is one of the highlights of Fannie Lou Musical.

Here, a rendition of “I Will Grow” is performed by several cast members from a recent production of “Scenes and Songs from Fannie Lou.” With such a rendition, it expands the meaning of the song exponentially. Imagine a timid mother committing to grow beyond her restricted circumstances. Or a teenager hardened to life much too soon. Or a go-along-to-get-along indigent whose reach does not exceed much further than the grasp of his next meal. Or a well-meaning but somewhat naïve college student. Or a staunch segregationist. Or a 44-year-old sharecropper whose eyes are opened to the point where she helps spearhead the region’s voting-rights movement.

These and all of the other characters in Fannie Lou Musical have the potential to move forward and grow.

Many, many thanks to cast members Torian Brackett, Cameron Draper, Ben Marcus, Michael Moss, Jessica Raymonvil, Emily Senkowsky, Karen Stefano, Desi Waters, Angela Watson-Modeste and Hanna Elizabeth Young, who all very graciously volunteered their time to record the song for the very first time. It is being offered here to support our upcoming production marking Fannie Lou Hamer’s birth a century ago. Titled “Scenes and Songs from Fannie Lou: Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Birth of a Voting Rights Heroine,” the event will take place Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017 at 3 p.m. at Yale University.

Half the proceeds from the sale of this version of “I Will Grow” will help defray production costs. The other half will go to the performers, who generously gave of their time and talent to make sure this recording project came to fruition.

This recording of “I Will Grow” is only available here, exclusively, at bandcamp.com.

Thank you very much for your support. We appreciate it very, very much.

And don't forget to come see us on Oct. 1. Hope to see you there!!

For more information, please visit our website at www.fannieloumusical.com

Sincerely,
Felicia
“Come for the art. Leave with the knowledge.”

lyrics

“I Will Grow” from Fannie Lou Musical
Music and Lyrics by Felicia Hunter
Copyright Felicia Hunter

[INTRO]
I may stumble and fall
I’m not perfect at all
But if trying counts for anything
I will try

You may want me to fail
Live my life through a veil
And though living isn’t everything
I won’t die

[VERSE 1]
As I travel on my journey
I am sheltered by my past
While I strive to meet a future
I’ve yet to know

I will step with bright distinction
Spread my wings despite rejection
No matter what you do to me
I will grow

[VERSE 2]
Your resistant walls may greet me
But they never will defeat me
I will gush ahead like streaming
Waters flow

You can’t take my mind
And you can’t take my soul
No matter what you do to me
I will grow

[REFRAIN]
I will grow
I will grow
And I’ll push past limitations
Though I might endure some pain
And I’ll show
I will show
All our noble, countless heroes
That their sacrifices weren’t in vain

[VERSE 3]
In the arms of soothing comfort
I’ll survive the battlefield
Every beating of my restless heart
Tells me so

You can’t take my mind
And you can’t take my soul
No matter what you do to me
I will grow

[REFRAIN]
I will grow
I will grow
And I’ll push past limitations
Though I might endure some pain
And I’ll show
I will show
All our noble, countless heroes
That their sacrifices weren’t in vain

[VERSE 4]
When I wake up in the morning
Blessed with yet another day
Charged to cultivate my life-gift
I will go
You can’t take my mind
And I’ll never, ever, ever give up my soul
No matter what you do to me
I will grow

I will grow
I will grow
I will grow
I will grow (repeat several times)

I
Will
Grow

credits

released May 16, 2017
Artists: Torian Brackett, Cameron Draper, Felicia Hunter, Ben Marcus, Michael Moss, Jessica Raymonvil, Emily Senkowsky, Karen Stefano, Desi Waters, Angela Watson-Modeste, Hanna Elizabeth Young

Recorded by Cristopher Rodriguez at Creepy Bird Studio and
by Brandon Lackey at Lineup Room Studio
Edited and Mixed by Brandon Lackey at Lineup Room Studio

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