Seven Sassy Sailors


Tongue twisters are a fun challenge and a great warm up for young singers. The goal is to keep all the words from tangling up while still presenting a believable story! The seven sassy sailors in this song find themselves in “hot water” as they sink their ship and require rescuing. Spoiler alert: they do survive the ordeal!

Seven Sassy Sailors can be included in your repertoire library as a warm-up or as an expressive storytelling song that is perfect for young singers. Older singers and adults will also enjoy this tongue twister challenge! The shifts between major and minor help set the stage and tell the tale. Have fun singing about these sassy, saucy, sorry, soggy sailors!

Download includes:

  • Vocal score
  • Director / piano score
  • Lyrics
  • Accompaniment track – with melody guide
  • Accompaniment track – piano
  • Bonus: Accompaniment track with accordion
  • Tongue Twister warm-up
  • Teaching Strategies
  • Blog Post (pdf)

Seven Sassy Sailors

Full Blog Post

Read more about Seven Sassy Sailors in the extensive blog post created by Donna to support teachers with teaching tips and strategies, additional tongue twister activities, and suggestions for adding dramatic flair to the performance.

Bonus Audio Track

Donna had fun adding an accordion to the accompaniment track. Use this accompaniment track (included in your download) to add flair to a performance of Seven Sassy Sailors.

Composers notes

Seven Sassy Sailors

I had just created the song Jolly Sailors  and I thought a tongue twister warm-up would be a good way for my students to get ready to sing the song. “Seven sassy sailors sailed the seven salty seas” is a common tongue twister that many people would know. I decided to write a few more verses for the sassy sailors. First the sailors enjoyed slipping salsa in their soup. Next they were sorry when their schooner sank and they suddenly found themselves swimming. After they sent an S.O.S., the soggy sailors were extracted from the sea so the song could end on a happy note! When the sailors start out on their salty, sailing adventure, the melody is in a major key. I had fun changing the third verse to a minor key while the sailors were involved in the sinking of their schooner, but I got to return to the major key for the happy ending.

I couldn’t resist adding some accordion to the accompaniment for this song. It has such a jaunty sound to add to the cheery, major-key verses and it could be made to sound quite melancholy in the minor key. I hope you enjoy my salty, sassy, saucy, sorry, soggy song! 

7 Sassy Sailors
Seven Sassy Sailors - Lyrics - Song composed by Donna Rhodenizer

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Vocal Range

C4 – A5




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