Over the past week, the Orsa Youth Choir from Sweden was here in town. I spent a bit of time with them over the course of a few days, and one night they sang this lovely song. I posted it on Youtube and wanted to find the history behind the song. I asked one of the choir members if I had the translation right. She said that she translated it on the fly and that it was correct.
Turning to Google Translate, I put in the english text, and translated it to Swedish. Then I took the “lilla askling” from the first line, which means “little darling”, and “sjunger godnatt” which means “good night” and put that into Google. It came up with a song entitled “Jag sjunger god natt” which means “I Sing Goodnight.”
Now that I had the title, I could Google search “Jag sjunger god natt”. This led me to a couple of youtube videos, as well as a couple of websites that had the lyrics to this song. On one of these websites, http://trebarnslandet.se/?p=3070, Google offered to translate the Swedish text to English. I took them up on their offer and the result is below.
BUT YOU MUST LISTEN TO THE YOUTUBE VIDEO FIRST!! It is a lovely touching song.
You can see the original text on the left, and the translated text on the right. Now keep in mind this is a goodnight lullaby. But as you get to the second chorus,.. I broke out laughing! Read the text closly.
Now I couldn’t stop laughing to find out more about the original source, which says it’s an “American Melody” or on another website an “American Folksong.”