I had opportunity to know Linda Hartman yesterday, the composer of the I'll Find You My Friend that it has the most researched sheet music lately - for missionary farewell.
Finally, we can buy the sheet music, in many languages, here.
She, kindly told me the true story behind that composition:
"Throughout the years I have heard many rumors, stories and other amusing tales of how (I'll Find You My Friend") came to be. I chuckle as I hear what has been passed around the church and would like to set the record straight. I was preparing for my full time mission to Atlanta, Georgia in 1979 when my sister, Laurel Ann suggested I write a song for my farewell. I responded with, "I don't know how to write a song. You've got to be kidding!" When it was her turn to prepare the family home evening lesson, she had the whole family write poetry. The poetry that came out of our little family was incredible. This gave me the confidence, and along with her encouragement I decided to try. Laurel Ann's greatest belief is that "you can do anything you want, if you want to badly enough!"
Laurel Ann also suggested calling Wanda West Palmer, composer of "Oh That I Were An Angel", who lived in Mesa to receive directions on how to even begin such a task. When I called her she invited me to come to her home and she shared the secret for song writing with me. She told me the key was just to PRAY--that Heavenly Father would work through me as an instrument in His hands to write down His words and music. Two weeks before my farewell the music came as I was visiting in the home of Ray and Frances Rolph. Frances asked me to play her piano and at that very moment I began composing the music for the song. I left her home and went back to my home and was surprised that I could still remember the music that had come into my mind and out through my fingers. The next morning I awoke and went to the piano. I could still remember the song that had come the night before through inspiration. I had no lyrics yet but I began trying to create words for this music. I worked for two weeks on lyrics but nothing came. I guess I had faith that it would develop into a song because I even asked a close relative, Lynette Carling to sing it for my farewell.
The day before the farewell, Lynette was to be at my home at 3:00 p.m. to rehearse the song which still had no lyrics. She called me from the grocery store at 2:45 p.m. to tell me she was running a little late but that she was still coming over to practice. I was about to tell her not to come when her child fell out of the grocery cart and she quickly hung up. I thought. "she is going to be so disgusted when she drives all the way to my home and I have no song for her to sing." I went to my room and began going over my notes for my talk when I read a story about two friends in the pre-existence. One was being sent to an LDS home and one was going to be born to a mother in another part of the country and would know nothing of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. After I read the story, I began to tingle; it was as if a surge of electricity was penetrating my soul. I felt the Spirit of the Holy Ghost going through me so strongly and I knew this was the time to pray. As I knelt beside my bed I pled with the Lord to help me with lyrics. Within a few minutes the lyrics flowed through my mind and I was finished before she arrived around 3:30 p.m.
In 1985, George W. Dyer and Tina Brunsdale Wright recorded my album entitled, "I'll Find You My Friend." Since the first publication, I'll Find You My Friend has been translated into twenty languages. In 1987, a sequel to the first album was released entitled, I'll Find You My Friend Part II" with a song called "I Found You My Friend." The vocalists for the recording are George W. Dyer, Lori Bowen Whittle, Keenan Kanahele and Lynette Vance Carling."
The sheet music is published in English, Spanish & Japanese. The other 17 languages are lead sheets meaning the people would use the sheet music she have written in English as the accompaniment and then they would have a LEAD SHEET with the lyrics using the melody note in the other languages. The other 17 languages would be a separate sheet(s).
Because it has Copyrights, please, contact her here or here to buy the sheet and to spread that now we have it, finally!
Thanks Sis Hartman for the wonderful story and efforts.