The little drummer boy (origin and carol)

The song “The Little Drummer boy” is now world-renowned with many covers by a diverse range of artists that even hit Billboard’s singles charts. With the Pentatonix hit no 1 in the winter of 2013-2014, Harry Simeone Chorale appeared on Billboard’s Hot 100 multiple times from 1959-1963 and David Bowie and Bing Crosby hit no 3 in the United Kingdom’ Official Singles chart in 1982-1983; this song has been here for a while. Even the Trapp family (the family from the Sound of Music) has sung it in 1951 when it was under the name “Carol of the Drum”. What is shocking is that there is no certainty about authorship (and even some controversies) but many attribute the song to Katherine K. Davis and lyrics based on an old Czech carol.

However, the song is a Christmas carol. It is all about a poor boy, summoned by the magi who played his drum to the newborn king as a gift. The newborn king is Jesus Christ. The little boy “played [his] best for him” and the baby “smiled at [him]”.

John Horvat has also written a wonderful tale well worth reading about this little poor boy that is worth reading, setting the scene at the birth of Christ.

This story is of course, not factual but inspired by the Bible.

 “But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” 

Matthew 19:14

“And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.” 

Matthew 2:11

Now, enjoy the song and merry Christmas!

Come they told me
Pa rum pum pum-pum
A newborn King to see
Pa rum pum pum-pum

Our finest gifts we bring
Pa rum pum pum-pum
To lay before the king
Pa rum pum pum-pum
Rum pum pum-pum Rum pum pum-pum

So to honor Him
Pa rum pum pum-pum
When we come

Little baby
Pa rum pum pum-pum
I am a poor boy too
Pa rum pum pum-pum

I have no gift to bring
Pa rum pum pum-pum
That’s fit to give our King
Pa rum pum pum-pum
Rum pum pum-pum Rum pum pum-pum

Shall I play for you
Pa rum pum pum-pum
On my drum

Mary nodded
Pa rum pum pum-pum
The ox and lamb kept time
Pa rum pum pum-pum

I played my drum for Him
Pa rum pum pum-pum
I played my best for Him
Pa rum pum pum-pum
Rum pum pum-pum Rum pum pum-pum

Then He smiled at me
Pa rum pum pum-pum
Me and my drum

This is post 3 of 3 of 2020 Christmas special.

One thought on “The little drummer boy (origin and carol)

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