a man a plan a canal panama

  • Submitted on time! Apr 26, 2020

Come with us

On a journey to the isthmus

The canal belonged to France

Thought it wasn’t really a canal just yet

But then Teddy had something to say about that

So he came up with a plan

He said hey why not just buy the land from France?

Oh and what about Panamianan independence?

It was still Colombia

Not quite an independent Panama

But then Teddy sent the U S of A’s military

A man a plan a canal Panama Panama

A man a plan a canal Panama Panama

So Panama was born

But 50 miles of their homeland were torn

Into locks and dams and shipping ports

A silver lining came about

When Dr. William Gorgas figured out

That mosquitos carry diseases and must be wiped out

By the year 1905

Yellow fever was no longer alive

So many more Panamanians did survive

Come with us

On a journey to the isthmus

Looking for feedback on

A lil' history song


nurphgun April 30, 2020 5:27pm

This rules. Pretty AND educational. The palindromic chorus melody is really unexpected and makes this much more than a little ditty.

Ben April 28, 2020 2:37pm

As someone who used to be addicted to watching videos on the internet of the Miraflores and Pedro Miguel Locks filling up and and transporting cargo, I really appreciated this song.

daeclan April 27, 2020 12:27pm

this is an amazing interpretation, i love the way this comes together so effortlessly yet transmits information clearly & carries that forlorn feeling of our (albeit detached) involvement in this man made land water intervention thing.

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:26am

Thanks! I really want to get better at writing sad songs and this random little ditty offered a chance to get a little forlorn!

Sam Pearce April 27, 2020 12:02pm

Hey! I could listen to a whole album of history songs like this. And they could be organized by whatever principle you find inspiring: geography, chronology, globe>nation>city>individual, etc. “Isthmus” is one of my favorite words, and I’ve tried to put in a song at least once but never had the guts to commit. Really enjoyed this!

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:24am

Thanks, Sam! Yea i gotta admit I was pretty pumped when I had an excuse to use “isthmus”

Ryan April 27, 2020 11:59am

Only you, my man lol. Love hearing your voice! So warm. The way you sing “born” — yessir. Nylon sounds great, too. How’d you record it? Fleet Foxes would high-five you for the chorus, if high-fives were chill right now.

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:25am

Thank you my dude. Everything was recorded with my dinky little dynamic mic. Finally busted out my dad’s old Ovation 12 string to just add a little extra something on the chorus

nick April 27, 2020 9:29am

ughck so good

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:25am


Kristoph April 26, 2020 10:18pm

This is a treat. Such a warm expression of a history lesson – Love how you spun the tale. – Oh, and the tones on this are spot, spot on.

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:26am

Thanks dude!

agasthya April 26, 2020 10:16pm

delivery on “So many more Panamanians did survive” was stellar. love this.

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:27am

Thanks! I struggled on a few lines on how to make all the syllables fit, but glad that the final line felt like a good landing

froebusiness April 26, 2020 9:55pm

Very wholesome. Nice job with the palindromic melody too.

Z April 26, 2020 9:20pm

Way to go with the complex palindromic melody, my palindrome was two notes up, two notes down. Parameter met.

Topical subject matter…

Thorough account of historical events…

In the words of Van Halen, I’m hot for teacher.

nick April 27, 2020 9:27am

^^^ can’t agree more

Tengo April 28, 2020 11:28am

hahah thanks, Z! I had fun making that melody. I decided to use a little Lydian mode action after going back to those guitar scale exercises Robin wrote out for us a few years ago