An advertisement for a trip to Yellowstone National Park


When a pitching change is made late in a game at Atlanta’s Turner Field, the familiar guitar chords call fans to look toward the large hi-res screen high above centerfield. It is time for Georgia native Alan Jackson’s hit song “Chattahoochee.”

The crowd sings along as the lyrics roll across scenes of the Peach State. Well, most lyrics. In sensitivity to the family audience, the words about steamy car activities in the second verse are not displayed. But the loud singing continues. And parents hope their children don’t inquire much about “a hoochie coochie.”

Then, at the seventh inning stretch, the familiar “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” (BTW, Crack Jack is singular) is followed by John Denver’s “Thank God, I’m A Country Boy.”

Which raises the question: What is it about shared singing that appeals to us — whomever the us may be?

It starts young. That’s why we still remember the lyrics to “Kumbayah,” “Down By The Riverside,” “This Land Is Your Land,” “This Little Light of Mine” and dozens of other catchy tunes.

In churches, some prefer newer choruses while others enjoy familiar hymns. But most like singing along with others regardless of the genre.

There is simply something that unites hearts when voices are united. And the division seems less — even when intentionally divided into groups to sign rounds.

So let’s keep singing along — whatever, wherever. And break out the marshmallows.

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