Monday, December 30, 2013

Monday Matchup :: What It's All About • Morah Music

Is THIS what it's all about?


According to the Urban Dictionary: Hokey Pokey is "a satanic ritual which requires one to put the right foot in and then the right foot out.Put the right foor in and shake it all about. Do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself around. And that's what it all about."
**Kol Isha**

Not so simple now, is it?

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Gesher Tzar • Yosef Karduner

That this whole world is a narrow bridge is well-documented. The point of this information though, "the underlying principle—the main thing—is that there should not be any fear at all..."

Gesher Tzar by Yosef Karduner on Grooveshark

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

TTT :: Olam Haba? • Country Yossi

From his 2010 album "Ride Again"—20 years in the making—comes this piece of news:

You won't have a place in Olam Haba. They won't let you in.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Monday Matchup ::
Me & You (& You & Me) • Lipa/Fried

In "Yener" (A Poshiter Yid), Lipa Schmeltzer asks people to focus less on others as a means of defining themselves.

In "Ich Bin Ich" (Ah Mechayeh!), Avraham Fried explains the words of the Heiliger Kotzker, "If I am me because you are you, and you are you because I am me, I am not and neither are you."

Friday, December 20, 2013

Pe'ero Alai • Shlomo Simcha (Carlebach)

From the "Shir Hakavod"--An'im Zemiros--recited responsively by Ashkenaz congregations after Shabbos davening:

פארו עלי ופארי עליו, וקרוב אלי בקראי אליו
His beauty is on me and my beauty is on Him
[alt., He adorns Himself for me and I adorn myself for Him];
He is close to me when I call

Good Shabbos, friend.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Dos Pintele Yid • Lipa Schmeltzer

For a second I thought it would be fun to save this for a Monday Matchup with Schwebel, Scharf & Levine's "Pintele Yid". And I'm sure it would be fun. But this track deserves its own space to be heard and heard again.

While watching the promo for this new CD, I formed my opinion: this is Lipa's coming out party as a Jew-in-the-Heart. And you and I—Jews in the hands and feet and beard—can go to hell. Ah. But it turns out that there should be no hell in Lipa's world.

The present track is a stirring melody and message, based greatly on the essence of the Chassidus I've come to know. And while I disagree with a key premise presented by Lipa in his rebuttal to detractors of this song, I agree with the larger point: As a public figure I have a responsibility to measure my words. But who says I need to use YOUR measuring stick?

Lipa's WhatsApp rebuttal (in poetry-slam Yiddish): Download Here


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Yehuda • Piamenta

From the very heavenly Strings of My Heart recording (1998)—8 tracks of surreal guitar riffing backed by heavy bass and bass drumming and complemented with flute. (Tracks are named after their wives and kids, I believe.)

Yehuda by Piamenta on Grooveshark

Choni and I would spend hours covering this song—he on the vocal bass and guitar; me on the whistle flute and table drum, climaxing in the drum gem at 2:27.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

TTT :: Ad Olam • Yeshiva Boys Choir

UPDATE!!! This just in from the homefront:

"I didn't set her up..."

Monday, December 16, 2013

Monday Matchup :: Hinei Ma Tov • MBD/Fried

Image found on

MBD singing Avremel's Hinei Ma Tov from Aderaba.

Avremel singing Avremel's Hinei Ma Tov from Aderaba.

Oh, you two. Why don't you just go off and sing some Henei Ma Tov together... mmmkay?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Ata Kidashta • Lipa Schmeltzer

From his new CD*, which I am coming to very much enjoy. BOORD! BOORD! Git Shabbos!!!

Ata Kidashta by Lipa Shmeltzer on Grooveshark

Shabbos is playing HERE!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

La Campanella • Evgeny Kissin

We, of course, love this incredible piano performance for what it is: an incredible piano performance. But we share this with you for the pianist's recent display of pure and powerful Jewish pride:

The Times of Israel reports:
Last Saturday night, Kissin received Israeli citizenship. Though Kissin, 42, has no plans to reside permanently in Israel, the Moscow native was granted approval by senior government officials for his citizenship request, which he filed for last year.
“If I, as a human being and artist represent anything in the world, it is my Jewish people, and therefore Israel is the only state on our planet which I want to represent with my art and all my public activities, no matter where I live.”
“When Israel’s enemies try to disrupt concerts of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra or the Jerusalem Quartet, I want them to come and make troubles at my concerts, too: because Israel’s case is my case, Israel’s enemies are my enemies, and I do not want to be spared of the troubles which Israeli musicians encounter when they represent the Jewish State beyond its borders.” MORE


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Mi Kashem • Tzlil V'Zemer 5 // Let Us Grow

Piccolo, piccolo, what do you say?
I say: Bass and Cello, come out to play!
Bass and cello, bass and cello, what do you say?
I say: violin let's make Avi's day!

Mi Kashem by Tzlil Vezemer on Grooveshark

Contrast this—music, harmony, arrangements, Avrohom Rosenberg's restraint—with today's choirs and choirleaders. If you need to appreciate this more.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

TTT :: Mishefa • Solid Gold II

It is a challenge to select a TTT and stand by it. There are many songs that are okay and just not excellent; others are so off the beatin' path that it's unfair to bring them in just to beat them down. And sometimes you remember a song on a mainstream and otherwise successful musical experiment that sounds like this. And as you begin uploading, it plays. And as it plays you realize: Wow. This is actually terrible! Fantastic!

Avi Fishoff, the man behind the Solid Gold series

I think it is Gideon Levine and Yeedle singing.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Monday Matchup :: Asay • Chaim Dovid/Shlomo Simcha

Question: Is the more devoted talmid the one who sounds as if he is the rav, or the one who sounds like himself, thereby spreading the voice of the rav? Stam.

Asay Limancha by Chaim Dovid on Grooveshark

Friday, December 6, 2013

Hashiveinu • Yehuda Green

To irreverently paraphrase R' Aharon Karliner: IF he is king, where were we till now...

Hashiveinu by Yehuda Green on Grooveshark

Click to join the Erev Shabbos LIVE broadcast.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Vi Dein Yid? • Lipa Schmeltzer

Well, it's certainly catchy!

This song is called "Vi dan boord?" ("Where's your beard?"). It quotes Pirkei Avos: Do not stare at the pitcher but what is inside it; a new pitcher can hold old wine; an amateur can have deep skills. In this song, the reflection asks equally: Yid, where's your beard? And beard, where's your Yid?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Days Are Coming • Shlomo Simcha

Several of the cantorial blockbusters from R' Shlomo Carlebach were not mainstreamed by him but by his young friend and admirer, R' Shlomo Simcha Sufrin. Included in the several: Keser Yitnu Lecha and Moshe v'aharon.

Last year, Shlomo Simcha teamed up with the Nafshenu Orchestra for a wedding-style-album* of all Carlebach songs. Typically a recipe for mediocrity, this formula works very, very well, when the "wedding singer" happens to be Shlomo Simcha, and the "wedding" is Shlomo Carlebach.

My so far favorite. Hinei Yamim Ba'im:

*This is when a collection of well-known songs are recorded with over-the-top arrangements by one of the popular wedding orchestras, usually as a means of promoting said orchestra to girls' in high school productions and middle-aged men in Kosher Gyms.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Al Hanissim • Safam/MBD

Thanks for sticking with us through yesterday's Terrible Matchup. Here is a little makeup singy.

Al Hanissim by Safam on Grooveshark

Monday, December 2, 2013

Cyber-Monday Matchup :: Choni G./Yeshiva Boys Choir

This is the first time in history that the 5th day of Chanukah falls on Cyber Monday and it will not happen again for at least 79,000 years.

We bring you this, uh, music.

Yivonim by Yeshiva Boys Choir on Grooveshark


Sunday, December 1, 2013