florida has a new state anthem

May 2, 2008 § Leave a comment

From the Miami Herald online

by Nicole Bardo-Colon

A tune written by a Broward school teacher may soon serve as a new state anthem under a compromise reached by state lawmakers Thursday night.

The House, following the lead of the Senate, approved a measure calling for Pompano Beach music teacher Jan Hinton’s Where the Sunshine Meets the Sky to serve as the new state anthem, while retaining a cleaned up version of the Stephen Foster Old Folks at Home, also known as Swanee River, as the official state song. (though it has clearly racist undertones which reference Florida’s plantation days)

From Channel 6 in Tampa

The state altered Foster’s original lyrics, with their slavery-era dialect and racial stereotypes, but “Old Folks At Home” still referred to a long-gone era of plantations in Florida. The three new songs nominated as a replacement celebrated a more modern Florida.

The FMEA said 8,020 ballots were cast and that “Sawgrass” won with more than half the vote.In addition to state song legislation, lawmakers will also consider a bill by Rep. Dave Murzin, R-Pensacola, to designate a different tune as Florida’s official state “anthem.” But that wouldn’t affect adoption of a new state song.”Florida, Where the Sawgrass Meets the Sky” was written by Jan Hinton of Pompano Beach.

Click here to hear a version of the song.

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