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The Charlie Maguire Songbook

Words and Chords to His Most Popular Songs

The Gray & Green

Words & Music by Charlie Maguire © 2001 Mello-Jamin Music. All rights reserved.

I wrote Gray & Green for the rangers of the National Park Service. It was 1995 and my first year as a seasonal ranger with the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area in Saint Paul, MN. Our duty station was hosting the "Ranger Rendezvous," an annual national convention for the Association of National Park Rangers. I was in charge of helping to book the entertainment for the weekend, and I thought it would be cool to have a theme song for the rangers written by one of their own. "Gray & Green" was written in the lobby of the Radison Hotel in Saint Paul at 11PM with the Mississippi River rolling along peacefully just across the street. I performed it at 11AM the following day upstairs in one of the large meeting rooms of the same hotel. I remember that one of the visiting rangers had to hold the lyrics so that I could perform the song, I had not yet had time to commit it to memory. It got a standing ovation! You can hear the song from the sample below or visit Youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFSBNkpa0os. You can also order the song on CD by clicking on Recordings and ordering the album "Great Mississippi."

Play Sample

C         Em         Am             F                C
Who watch over the mountains, the rivers, and the plains?
           Em         Am          F         G
Who teach everything, everyday, from our heritage?
C            Em         Am                  F                  C
Who mark the Mather and Albright trails so they can still be seen?
     Em           Am     F               G       C
The national park rangers, who wear the gray and green

Additional Verses:

With a crown tall as the mountains, with a brim wide as the plains
We live our vision of the world, for all in our domain
We serve all of the people, we keep a place for them to dream
The national park rangers, who wear the gray and green

So here's to Clare Marie Hodges, and to Galen Clark
Harry Yount, Charlie Young, giants wrapped in tougher bark
And thousands more just like them, across the Service can still be seen
The national park rangers, who wear the gray and green

Previous Songs: Fine Old Lady * The Teton Dam * Goodnight Baby * The B. C. Rail * Play Us a Waltz * Ozawindib * Long Way to Another Friend * Itasca: A Place of Beginnings * I'm From Minnesota * The Strike Is On * The C.C.C. * Interstate of Broken Hearts * Rainfall Has Turned to Snow * Gypsy Woody * We'd Go To Town (And Go Dancing) * Towboat * The Hinkley Fire * Darling * Fine Old Lady * Getting In The Cows * Talking Home Improvement * The Ballad of Augie Mattsen * Itasca * When's That Train A'Coming? * I Like It Here/Oh Cold And Misery * Winter on the Farm * Sam Smith * L'Etoile Du Nord * G. I. Nightingale * Eight to Twelve * Fall Is Here * Superior * Shelly Salo * The Ballad of Tommy Woodgate

This month's song

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