What is the Songbook Project?
Many of us have heard the story of how Harry Ruggles, the fifth person to become a Rotarian, headed off a tense situation during a Rotary meeting by jumping on a chair and crying out, “OK, boys, let’s all sing Let Me Call Your Sweetheart!” And so began the tradition of singing at Rotary meetings.
Throughout the years, IFRM has published various songbooks for Rotarians to use. In the late 1990’s, the “blue” songbook entitled Songs for the Rotary Club: Words and Music was compiled as an IFRM Community Service Project. Until recently, Rotary International sold this songbook through its bookstore.
However, the Rotary world has changed significantly in the past three decades; most significantly, the explosion of a global technology brings us in instant communication with our fellow Rotarians around the world. We are learning more about differing values, languages, and cultures. The new songbook is more representative of our diverse membership; one that is inclusive, modern, and more reflective of world cultures beyond those of North America.