How Can I Keep From Singing?

Lyrics & Information
LyricsAbout the song...
My life flows on in endless song
Above earth’s lamentation
I hear the sweet, tho’ far-off hymn
That hails a new creation
Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear the music ringing
It finds an echo in my soul
How can I keep from singing?

What tho’ my joys and comfort die?
The Lord my Saviour liveth
What tho’ the darkness gather round?
Songs in the night He giveth
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that Refuge clinging
Since Christ is Lord of heaven and earth
How can I keep from singing?

I lift mine eyes; the cloud grows thin
I see the blue above it
And day by day this pathway smoothes
Since first I learned to love it
The peace of Christ makes fresh my heart
A fountain ever springing
All things are mine since I am His
How can I keep from singing?

Words: Attributed to “Pauline T.”;
Music: Robert Lowry;
Arrangement: Sally DeFord and James Loynes

This is one of those beautiful old folk-type songs that I have just been aching to arrange for quite a long time. During a month that James and Fran spent with us in the summer, it was inevitable that we ended up playing with it. It’s a lovely expression of gratitude, joy and hope. The lyrics seem to have first appeared in “The New York Observer” in the mid-1800s, and the setting by Robert Lowry has since become a favorite standard hymn.

Sheet Music and Recordings
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    Vocals by James Loynes, Accompaniment Track

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    This video uses the MP3 available on this site, with vocals by James Loynes
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    How Can I Keep From Singing CD
    Vocals by James Loynes

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    Accompaniment Tracks CD

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      12 Responses to “How Can I Keep From Singing?”


      Thank you so much for making this available! This old hymn just speaks to the soul, and I kept running into the contemporary song (completely different) while looking for music to this one.


      I have spent a lot of time looking for a great arrangement of this song (one of my most favorite)
      and I just found it for our choir!
      Thanks so much.


      me gusta mucho esta canción . podían traducir la letra al español?


      I love this song, especially with James Loynes, singing! It describes how I feel, especially as I look outside or walk through nature. My only wish is that I could sing it like he does. I really really do, but it’s in my heart!



      I love your sense of humor (on the website) and your music. I led choirs for over 40 years, but I never knew this wonderful hymn “How Can I Keep from Singing.” James Loynes’ rendition is wonderful. Thank you for making the sheet music and accompaniment track available. I haven’t quite figured out how I can time the beginning of the accompaniment track with the solo, but I’m sure it can be worked out.

      It is hard to find melodies as beautiful as this these days. Bless your soul for sharing it with us.


      This very song describes my life.


      i simply love all your music sally you are blest


      I am looking for a .pc file for How Can I Keep From Singing so I can transpose this lovely arrangement.

      I saw that you haven’t uploaded that file yet. I’m just hoping you soon will (maybe within a week or so????)

      I love your stuff! Thanks for sharing.

      Julie Larsen


      I have looked all over for this song. I found a version of it in a Methodist Hymnal and they sing it all the time. I am so glad I found this version with some of the words transposed. I LOVE IT!!!


        The choir sounded lovely at the conference last month! Now we are singing it for our conference and it is simply beautiful!
        Thank you for this arrangement available, and for making it available! I sang a different arrangement of this song in high school choir many moons ago, it brings back sweet memories.


      I Love this song!


      I sing in a ward choir and our choir director has chosen to sing your beautiful arrangement of “How Can I Keep From Singing.” I have had NO voice training in my life and i always sing bass. Any chance you have a recording of just the bass part to help me practice? I have a very hard time differentiating the bass notes when the piano plays. Thank you for your beautiful music. One of the reasons I enjoy singing.

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