My Saint Helena Island

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My Saint Helena Island
Flag of Saint Helena.svg

Regional anthem of  Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
LyricsDave Mitchell, 1975
MusicDave Mitchell, 1975

My Saint Helena Island is the unofficial territorial anthem of Saint Helena. It was written by Dave Mitchell in 1975, after persuasion from the inhabitants of Saint Helena. As a British Overseas Territory the official anthem is "God Save the Queen".

Dave Mitchell, nicknamed “Old Saddlebags”, was a country & western disc jockey on AFN Volcano Radio on Ascension Island. He was introduced to Saints on Ascension by his friend Charlie Renn, and became involved with them, playing for parties all over the island. Renn suggested that Mitchell write a song for St. Helena. Mitchell was reluctant to do so, as he had never been to St Helena, so Renn, who had visited the island, promptly brought Mitchell some large colour postcards of the island. After sitting in his room for a night or two studying the postcards, Mitchell picked up his guitar and in a few minutes the song was written. It is, appropriately, a country song.[1]

The song was an immediate hit with the Saints on Ascension. With the help of recording company Camaro Records, Mitchell made two 45-rpm records (four songs) in Memphis, Tennessee in 1975. He planned to make a trip to St. Helena to deliver the records in person, but this proved not to be possible, so he had to mail them instead. The reaction on St. Helena was as enthusiastic as that of the Saints on Ascension, and “My St. Helena Island” quickly became the de facto national song of St. Helena.[1]

It is played regularly as a request on Saint FM Community Radio, and was played over the now-decommissioned RMS St Helena's PA system every time it departed port.[1]

Lyrics[edit]

My heart is drifting southward
To my home down in the sea
It’s the isle of St. Helena
Where my loved ones wait for me
Long since I left it
But I’ll soon be going home
To my St. Helena island
And swear I’ll never roam

Diamonds they are pretty
So is your fancy cars
But St. Helena island
Is prettier by far
All the wonders of this world
I’m told they number seven
But St. Helena Island
Is the nearest one to heaven

Diamonds they are pretty
So is your fancy cars
But St. Helena island
Is prettier by far
Someday if the Lord above
Comes out of heaven’s gate
I’m sure He’ll pick St. Helena
And use it as His place

References[edit]

External links[edit]