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Smitten With The Mitten


Lyrics

"Song Title"
Music & Lyrics by Scott Cooley.

The sun sets on one side, and on the other it rises

Painting pretty pictures on watery horizons

The Native Americans, the French, then all the rest

Have settled in to make our state the best


Kalkaska sand, a rare soil in this land

The state that is shaped like a mitten on your hand

The Painted Turtle wanders this fertile ground

Where state parks and forests can always be found


White Pines in straight lines, planted long ago with care

In the sky they rise over a hundred feet in the air

The Apple Blossom flowers are pretty in pink

And we never run out of fresh water to drink


I’m smitten with the mitten, it’s our happy home

With great lakes and great times, in cars and boats we roam

If our insect was the love bug, then surely I've been bitten

I’m a Michigander, ‘cause I’m smitten… with the mitten


The Greenstone gem from Isle Royale

Is the crown jewel of an island unspoiled

The Petoskey stone, its namesake it’s home

Can be found on its beaches when carefully combed


With islands and waterfalls and rocky shores so nice

It’s a water winter wonderland, a true paradise

The great lakes are awesome, surrounding us all

Lighthouses lead ships in from the  squalls


In our woods are wild turkey and white tailed deer 

Wildlife is plentiful and protected here 

Where mastodons once roamed, and wolverines called home 

The Dwarf Lake Iris, grows wild near limestone 


I’m smitten with the mitten, it’s our happy home

With great lakes and great times, in cars and boats we roam

If our insect was the love bug, then surely I've been bitten

I’m a Michigander, ‘cause I’m smitten… with the mitten


The Robin’s striking beauty is a site we all treasure

Just like the fall colors, both seasonal pleasures

The Brook Trout swim about throughout the state

A fisherman’s paradise in streams, rivers and lakes


When it comes to automobiles, our state is the hub

Their wheels bring prosperity, passion and love

Our peninsulas can be seen from up high on a ridge

Joined by the mighty Mackinaw Bridge


From the song of Hiawatha to the Motown sound

Up the Porcupine mountains to the Lake of the Clouds

When northwinds blow cold, we get lake effect snow

Skiing, snowmobiling, and sledding we go


I’m smitten with the mitten, it’s our happy home

With great lakes and great times, in cars and boats we roam

If our insect was the love bug, then surely I've been bitten

I’m a Michigander, ‘cause I’m smitten… with the mitten


Copyright © ℗ 2014 by Scott Cooley. All rights reserved.
^Click photo above to view full size and read the lyrics
Smitten With The Mitten
Album cover photo by Richard Cooley
Song from the album Used To Be Good Looking
Position Track # 14
Duration 7:27
Released June 21st, 2014
Label Scott Cooley Records
Format CD, MP3, FLAC, OGG
Genre Americana, state song folk ballad
Studio Scott Cooley Music Productions
Producer Scott Cooley
Songwriter words and music by Scott Richard Cooley
Publisher Scott Richard Cooley Music Publishing, ASCAP
Personnel Scott Cooley - vocals, guitars, bass, drums, percussion; Lenore Cooley - accordion
Track Chronology
"Great Lakes Blues"

(#13)
"Smitten With The Mitten"

(#14)




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Brief Description
I started writing this song back in the 90s, and even recorded a version of it back then, but it was never quite right.  At the time, I recall reading somewhere about the fact that my home state didn't have an official state song.  This served as motivation to me, along with my love of my home state, so I took the age-old advice to "write about what you know" and applied it to my ambition to write a grand song as a songwriting challenge.  I forgot all about it for many years until I rediscovered the lyric document in 2014 and decided the time spent honing my craft might allow me to revisit the song and improve it.  I was also able to locate the old recording and decided to write a completely new chord structure and melody for the verses.  I then decided the chorus wasn't quite right either, so I completely rewrote the words, harmony and melody for it as well.  

Then I did some research and learned that several new state symbols had been added since I originally wrote it, so I had to rewrite some of the existing verses, and add a few more to give it a level of completeness I was comfortable with.  I also learned that it was only in recent years that someone discovered we did in fact have an official state song after all.  Additionally, I read that there is another song that often gets confused with our official state song, and further, that one or both actually borrowed from an older European tune for the melody.  I am not sure about the validity of what I read, but in reviewing the lyrics, the language seemed archaic and incomplete, while the music a little too familiar.  

After the research, rewriting, and re-recording, Smitten with the Mitten is the result - a new song with original music and lyrics that depict what Michigan is like today while taking into account our history as well.  It covers just about everything that is official, except the scientific term for the Greenstone and the Latin motto, which I didn't think were song-friendly enough to incorporate.  Working in so many symbols and elements of what I love about our state was a challenge, and this is the best I could come up with.  After recording it and listening back to this version, I think it is just about as good and as appropriate as I can imagine a modern song for Michigan to be. 
Audio Sample



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Scott Cooley,
Jul 25, 2014, 7:48 PM