Friday, May 19, 2006

Star-Spangled Banner Gets Multi-Language Treatment

NEW YORK (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – If you feel left out because the only versions of “The Star-Spangled Banner” are in English and Spanish, there’s some reason to sing.

A New York-based group of musicians called Voices United For America has just released a rendition of the national anthem using ten different languages, including Swedish, German, Bulgarian, Korean, Tagalog and Arabic.

The song is available at and each language gets part of a verse.

VUFA spokesman Michael Gilboe says the producers avoided a global squabble over the singing order by having a male voice start a line and a female voice finishing it.

However, the final verse beginning, Oh say, does that star- spangled banner yet wave... is sung by everyone in English.

The recording session for the multi-lingual version went smoothly but Gilboe admits translating the anthem required some poetic license.

In his words, “The woman singing in Korean had to change around the phrase, ‘Land of the free’ because, in her language, freedom applies to merchandise, not people.”

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