In solidarity with the people of Ukraine, Heidi Swedberg and Daniel Ward have put together an arrangement for ukulele of a hauntingly beautiful Ukrainian lullaby. “Kotikoo,” sometimes written as “Kotyku,” is the phonetic translation of Котику from Котику Cіренький, which means “Gray Cat.”
Here’s what the duo has to say about the piece:
“As the world watches millions of Ukrainian people flee their war-ravaged country, our hearts cry out to those displaced from their homes. We feel the tragedy of war’s consequences on the most vulnerable—children, animals, elderly. Besides donating to charities that serve the dispossessed, what can we do? Leonard Bernstein said, ‘This is our reply to violence, to make music more intensely more beautifully, more devotedly than before.’
“Here is a song to play and sing for soothing and solidarity: a traditional Ukrainian lullaby, with the original lyrics written phonetically and an English translation. The haunting minor-key song asks the kitty to be still and purr so the baby can sleep. As with most lullabies, the song is short and simple. It is arranged here as a chord melody for ukulele.”
Fine the music for ukulele arrangement for “Kotikoo” below, and play along in the video above.