More Than A Muscle

by Teresa Jennings

Here's a tune that can be used for Valentine's Day or any time you like. It's an ode to the heart, which is, as the song says, more than a muscle. This lighthearted country piece is meant to be sung with a bit of an exaggerated old-fashioned country twang, as we did on the recording. While it's optional to do this, we think your students will enjoy it.

Besides the humorous lyrics, the real fun of this piece is the movement. There are suggestions for poses or actions right on the music. You can use these exactly as they are or adapt them. For example, the muscle pose we had in mind is somewhat like the one the illustrated heart is demonstrating on the lyric page. However, there are a few ways to show off muscle or weight lifting poses. Let students come up with their own, and mix and match. It's okay for them to overdo a little and be silly about it.

Pick a few students to speak the solo lines "oh, sure" each time. Use the same students, or alternate them to give several a chance. These lines should be spoken approximately rhythmically as indicated.

For proper comedic timing and build up, movements should not begin until the second time at measure 8. To help the audience understand what the movements go along with, have one student recite the lyrics. Again, an overemphasized country drawl with some degree of dramatic presentation would be most effective. Our performer was Shelley Martin, who made us all giggle with her delivery (especially on the word "dump"). Let your speaker listen and imitate her style.

As mentioned, the "gesture of love" can be a number of things. Add your own ideas as well, then decide which you will use, or use them all! Let the sequence of movements recur at measure 43 the second time while everyone is singing.

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.