The ToneWay® Project: helping people play music


Little Bessie [core]

Hug me closer, mother closer
Put your arms around me tight
For I'm cold and tired dear mother
And I feel so strange tonight

Something hurts me here dear mother
Like a stone upon my breast
And I wonder, mother, wonder
Why it is I cannot rest

All the day while you were working
As I lay upon my bed
I was trying to be patient
And to think of what you said

Just before the lamps were lighted
Just before the children came
While the room was very quiet
I heard someone call my name

All at once a window opened
On a field of lambs and sheep
Some were at the brook a-drinking
Some were lying fast asleep

In a moment I was looking
On a world so bright and fair
Which was filled with little children
And they seemed so happy there

They were singing oh so sweetly
Sweetest songs I've ever heard
They were singing sweeter mother
Than our darling little birds

Come up here, my little Bessie
Come up here, and live with me
Where little children never suffer
Through the long eternity

In the solemn hour of midnight
In the silence long and deep
Lying on her mother's bosom
Little Bessie fell asleep

Now up yonder at the portals
That are shining very fair
Little Bessie now is tended
By her Savior's loving care

Available in these books:

Get Started Plus:
Core Songs Edition
100 songs and our acclaimed play-by-ear learning method.
Big Print Songs
Over 200 songs.
Family Tradition
The reference manual, with lyrics to 330 songs.
The first two books feature large-print lyrics (20-point type) and include chords, historical info, jamming hints, and more.

...and on these CDs:

Five CDs, 100 songs. Recordings from the Abbott family and their friends.
Listen to sample tracks.

The MP3 collection has all 100 songs on one CD for a discount. See details.


A song from the The ToneWay Mountain Music Collection, which offers lyrics and free Song Clips (recordings for learning the song by ear) for nearly 400 traditional songs, many of which are often heard in bluegrass and old-time jam circles. The ToneWay Project also offers songbooks, CDs, and a free online video series for learning to play music by ear. http://ToneWay.com