Down in the River to Pray

“We went down to the river to pray, every day.”

“We prayed for a way to protect water, and all beings who drink water, from harm by the Canadian pipeline company Enbridge. Enbridge sucked rivers (and fire hydrants) dry during historic drought, poisoned rivers with drilling fluid, broke ancient aquifers – losing millions of gallons of artesian water.

“We pray the oil pipelines will be safely turned off, before they spill again.

“Enbridge, Inc. paid over $7 million for over 1,000 arrests of those opposed to their Line 3 tar sands pipeline. Hundreds of peaceful water protectors now face thousands of criminal charges – including “felony theft” and “conspiracy” – for protecting Minnesota’s water.

“Those who defended water must now defend themselves. Some may be crushed with fines over $3 million or jail time over a decade. Please ask Governor Walz to support dropping the charges against water protectors – visit”

—Honor the Earth

The earliest recorded version of this song, “The Good Old Way,” was published in the landmark “Slave Songs of the United States,” an 1867 collection of African-American spirituals gathered by northern abolitionists.

December 17, 2020, interfaith prayer gathering for the water, on 1855 Treaty Territory near where Line 3 pipe was forced under the mighty Mississippi River.

January 20, 2022, recording session with members of “Women Who Cook,” singing in support of water and her protectors.



Musical Arrangement

Scottie Miller and Cierra Alise Hill


The Shell River Seven and Marian Moore


Barbara With (Lead Vocalist), Mary Jane Alm, Prudence Johnson, Jearlyn Steele, Marian Moore, Winona LaDuke

Instrument- alists

Scottie Miller (Piano), Cierra Alise Hill (Cello and Viola), David Stone (Hammond Bass), Patrick Davis (Acoustic Guitar), Rebecca Kemble (Accordion)


Wild Sound Studio, Minneapolis, and Winterland Studio, New Hope, MN

Mixed by

David Melek and Steve Kaul, Wild Sound Studio

Mixed and Mastered by

Ryan Rusch, The Weight Room, Washburn, WI

Music Producers

David Melek, Barbara With, Marian Moore, Kaesha Baloch

Video Producer

Honor the Earth

Cinema- tography

River Akemann, Bee Kakac, Keri PIckett


River Akemann, Bee Kakac

Director / Director of Photography

Keri Pickett

Official Website