Summer Birds

by Jonathan Vassar

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All proceeds from this song go towards Jim's community organization: Adventure Walkers:

Song by Jonathan Vassar & Jim McCullough
Based on a story by Jim McCullough

Written as a part of the Giving Notes Project:


I spent summers down South when I was a kid
And I still think about what my Grandaddy said
"You don’t just work on a farm, you live.
Boy, it’s important to remember this."

Around midday we’d take a break,
After working the morning bailing hay.
We’d go down to the pond to swing
In hammocks tied between the trees.
Back and forth, back and forth
Between the trees.

Looking up at late summer leaves,
My Grandaddy pointed out to me,
He said look there goes a Summer Bird,
And He told me a story I’d never heard:

"Summer Birds as the legend goes
Are leaves that turn before the fall
Turn into birds and off the tree
Fly down south to return next spring."

Back and forth back and forth
To return next spring.

As we rocked in the hammock I asked him:
"Like summer birds will we come back again?"
"That’s right, boy" He smiled and laughed.
"Like the summer birds we’ll always come back."

And so we did year after year,
And In my heart I still go there.
I tell the stories i learned from him,
Like summer birds, to my grandkids.

As I rock back and forth back and forth
With my grandkids.

So go find yourself a Summer Bird.
See it fly off of a tree.
Don’t be sad for it as it leaves.
It’s just going south to return next spring.


released July 21, 2020
Shaina Evoniuk: Violin
Stewart McCullough: Banjo
Adam Theis: Ukulele Bass
Antonia FD Vassar: Vocals
Jonathan Vassar: Vocals, Guitar

Illustration by Mary Reid and Reagan McCullough.
Recorded by Jonathan Vassar, Shaina Evoniuk, Adam Theis, & Stewart McCullough.


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Jonathan Vassar Richmond, Virginia

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