Mary's Boy Child (Mary's Little Boy Chile)

This Christmas song was written by American composer, songwriter, arranger, choral conductor and Afro-American music expert, Jester (Jesse) Hairston (1901–2000).

It was originally written in 1956, for a Hollywood Choir being conducted by film-composer Walter Schumann, and uses a calypso rhythm that Hairston had earlier written for a party which many West Indian people were attending. The original title was "Mary's Little Boy Chile", but the shorter version is more widely used now.

The song was first made popular by Jamaican-American pop-star, singer, songwriter, activist and actor Harry Belafonte (b 1927), who recorded it in 1956. This version featured on the UK Singles-chart in 1957. Boney M, a German disco-group, recorded a different version in 1978, and this too became a best-seller.

Many other artists have also covered it, and the song has effectively become a Christmas hymn in some churches. Some people believe, incorrectly, that it is a traditional Caribbean Christmas carol.



Downloads




Examples


Mega-church style choir performance:



Harry Belafonte version:



Kareoke version, Boney-M arrangeemnt:



Singer with band:



Instrumental - church organ, Boney-M version:


Lyrics

The lyrics are copyright so cannot be reproduced here. But they are currently available on this website. A rough outline is:
1 Long time ago in Bethlehem, so the Holy Bible say ...

Chorus
Hark, now hear the angels sing,
A new King born today,
And man will live forevermore,
Because of Christmas day.
Trumpets sound and angels sing,
Listen to what they say,
That man will live forevermore,
Because of Christmas day.

2 While shepherds watched their flocks by night ...


3 Now, Joseph and his wife, Mary, come to Bethlehem that night ...

4 By and by, they find a little nook ..


See more ...



KEEP IN CASE THE OTHER SOURCE OF THE WORDS IS MISSING
1 Long time ago in Bethlehem,
So the Holy Bible say,
Mary’s boy child, Jesus Christ,
Was born on Christmas day,

Chorus
Hark, now hear the angels sing,
A new King born today,
And man will live forevermore,
Because of Christmas day.
Trumpets sound and angels sing,
Listen to what they say,
That man will live forevermore,
Because of Christmas day.

2 While shepherds watched their flocks by night,
They saw a bright new shining star,
They heard a choir sing,
The music seemed to come from afar,

3 Now, Joseph and his wife, Mary,
Come to Bethlehem that night,
They found no place to born she child,
Not a single room was in sight.

4 By and by, they find a little nook,
In a stable all forlorn,
And in a manger cold and dark,
Mary’s little boy was born!

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