April 06, 2016

Lexicon of Klezmer Terminology

The jewish Music Research Centre at Hebrew University of Jerusalem now hosts a free dictionary of terms relating to klezmer music online. The lexicon is in English. This new "Lexicon of Klezmer Terminology" or LKT lists terms in alphabetical order. The LKT "compiles a wide array of source materials that shed light on the historical and contemporary state of knowledge about klezmer music. Each entry includes a number of citations from primary and secondary sources that include or refers to the term in question. It also indicates whether musical notation or sound recordings are included in the source."
Posted by jmwc at 09:55 PM

December 30, 2015

Collection of Yiddish Songs in HathiTrust

Several libraries have digitized scores of Yiddish music, which are now linked and in the HathiTrust. Other books of interest are listed in the catalog, but not yet available full text online to the public. Small collection, but interesting.
Posted by jmwc at 08:00 PM

July 06, 2015

Finding Yiddish Music Online Guide

A guide to finding Yiddish music online has been uploaded by the NYPL. It's available at:
Posted by jmwc at 03:06 PM

June 12, 2015


The Leib Glantz Project Team announces that the website of the LEIB GLANTZ PROJECT is now up and running on the Florida Atlantic University website.

This following last year’s publication of the 500-page book THE LEIB GLANTZ PROJECT that included three audio compact disks.

You can gain access to this website by logging on to:
The website is defined as “Sound ‘n Scores” - a project of the Recorded Sound Archives at Florida Atlantic University Libraries in Boca Raton. It is a unique online approach to music studies, which combines the experience of hearing recorded sound tracks while viewing corresponding sheet music.

The website contains 43 Leib Glantz compositions, organized into seven content areas in the order they are performed in Jewish prayer services.
Displayed pages of over 100 scores of new arrangements composed by several world famous musicians, many by Raymond Goldstein in collaboration with Cantor Naftali Herstik. The arrangements are presented in various keys for the convenience of performers with different vocal ranges.
The user may click on the sheet music image to select a specific composition.
The first page to appear is an introduction explaining the composition, followed by the musical score. Audio tracks are shown in the player on the upper right side of the page.
Track 1 is an original recording of the composition by Cantor Leib Glantz.
Track 2 is an audio of the new arrangement as produced by Finale software.
Translations and transliterations are available by clicking on the book icon beneath the player. The menu at the top of the page can be used to navigate, zoom and print. The user may print any of the new arrangement musical scores free of charge.

In addition, the site contains a biography of Cantor Leib Glantz, photos, and access to all Cantor Glantz’s historical recordings.

We would like to thank all the donors that made this project a monumental success and to the very dedicated staff at FAU: Dr. Maxine Schackman, Yom Chouloute, Alethea Perez and Ben Roth.

The Editorial Board of the Leib Glantz Project –
Raymond Goldstein, Cantor Naftali Herstik, Cantor Evan Cohen, Cantor Benjamin Maissner and Noam Brown.

The Leib Glantz Project is dedicated in honor of Cantor Yonia Glantz (1903-1962), Leib’s brother.
Posted by jmwc at 05:36 AM

May 14, 2015

Stonehill Jewish Song Collection

Center for Traditional Music and Dance announces that the Stonehill Jewish Song Collection website is live - recordings of songs collected by Ben Stonehill in 1948 from DP Camp refugees being temporarily housed at the Hotel Marseilles in Manhattan. CTMD has been working with Yiddish scholar Miriam Isaacs to implement the site, and we'll continue to expand the online offerings over time.

A project of the Center for Traditional Music and Dance's An-sky Institute for Jewish Culture
Posted by jmwc at 06:16 PM

August 15, 2013

Milken Archive Musical Gems

Milken Archive of Jewish Music is offering some free downloads in it's "Musical Gems" series. This week, it's Gershon Kingsley's Shiru ladonai: L'kha dodi .
See: http://www.milkenarchive.org/promo_mp3s/view/Gershon-Kingsley-s-L-kha-dodi?key=elultwo for a free MP3 download.
Posted by jmwc at 04:21 PM

The Full English is now Online

Well, it's not Jewish music, but I imagine a lot of musicians out there will be interested in this bit of library and archive news.... This is from history bibliography discussion group.... and I've taken a look... it is astounding what is now available online.

'Staggering' digital folk music archive launched (M. Chilton, The Telegraph, June 21, 2013)

The Full English, an online folk music archive of 44,000 records and over 58,000 digitized images, was launched at the English Folk Dance and Song Society.

Read more at:

The Full English is at:

You can follow their blog at http://efdss-thefullenglish.blogspot.co.uk/
Posted by jmwc at 12:34 PM

July 19, 2013

Joanna Spector Archival Collection

Naomi Steinberger, Director of Library Services of The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary, announces its new blog jts-spectorarchives.tumblr.com with findings from the Johanna Spector Archival Collection. The collection consists of papers, recordings, photos and other items related to Spector's career as an ethnomusicologist focusing on Jewish communities of the East.

Love the "this-is-how-this-stuff-came-in pix. And...For all those out there in libraryland,... JTS is to be commended on this innovative use of online technologies to promote archival holdings! Congrats on starting your tumblr blog! We'll all be curious to see what's inside. And kudos to Dr. Eliott Kahn for taking on the beginning of another amazing collection. (He's the guy that brings order to the chaos), and has created the great archival finding aids to many other Jewish music collections of note held at JTS. JTS has a whole team of archivists on this that include: Shira Bistricer, Jenna Hymes, Cynthia Schwartz, Michala Biondi. These are the people who make your research really possible. If you go there and use this collection, give them a huge thanks.

Posted by jmwc at 11:45 AM

February 14, 2013

Yiddish Translation Project Reported

The C & RL News, of the Association of College and Research Libraries Reports in the February 2013 issue that two archival repositories have a new innovative project to create translations from historic Yiddish newspapers and journals. The Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives at Cornell University and the Modern Records Centre at the University of Warwick in the UK are jointly digitizing more than 1500 pages from Yiddish newspapers and journals. These papers are from the 19th and early 20th centuries, and were originally written for working-class Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe.

The project will translate publications such as The Ladies' Garment Worker. The project is looking for volunteers to translate the documents from Yiddish to English. People can help by participating in the project. If you know Yiddish and would like to translate articles, simply register, go to a journal. and type a translation into a text box. Perfect translation aren't necessary. There are instructions. You can also see a short video about getting started with editing. Everything will be made free online.

The project's wiki is at http://transcribe.lib.warwick.ac.uk/yt/index.php/
Posted by jmwc at 03:13 PM

January 31, 2013

YIVO to Digitize Ruth Rubin Field Recordings

Lorin Sklamberg, Sound Archivist at YIVO writes:

We [YIVO] have indeed begun the work of digitizing Ruth Rubin's collection of field recordings. A large portion of the materials were transferred and databased by Bay Area singer/instrumentalist Jeanette Lewicki over the summer with the support of New York's Center for Traditional Music and Dance. Though far from completed, the tracks that have been processed are currently being prepared for on-site use in the not-too-distant future by YIVO Sound Archives consultant Matt Temkin.

Renewed interest in these treasures can be partially attributed to the posthumous publication of Yiddish Folksongs from the Ruth Rubin Archives edited by Chana Mlotek and Mark Slobin (Wayne University Press, 2007). Recent projects that utilize the songs include my own Saints and Tzadiks (songs from the Irish and Yiddish traditions developed together with Susan McKeown), Voices of Ashkenaz (German-Jewish song connections explored by Andreas Schmitges, Deborah Strauss, Svetlana Kundish and Thomas Fritze) and Alpen Klezmer (Bavarian and Yiddish songs with Andrea Pancur and Ilya Shneyveys). I should also mention here the continued cultural activism and encouragement of Pete Rushefsky, Itzik Gottesman, Ethel Raim and Sandy Wolofsky, without whom we wouldn't have gotten this work started.

Please contact me directly if you are interested in these or other Sound Archives holdings.

To contact Mr Sklamberg:

Mr. Lorin Sklamberg, Sound Archivist
The Max and Frieda Weinstein Archives of YIVO Sound Recordings
YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
15 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10011
(212) 294-6169 phone
(917) 606-8289 fax
Posted by jmwc at 06:19 PM

January 30, 2013

Johanna Spector Archives at JTS Receives Grant

January 30, 2013?The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) has received a $175,300 Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, through a program administered by the Council on Library Resources (CLIR). The grant will make the archives of Dr. Johanna Spector, a major repository of rare materials related to the dwindling Jewish communities of Africa, the Middle East, and Asia available for research and to the public for the first time. The collection will now be cataloged for use, and rehoused in order to prevent deterioration of its materials.

Dr. Spector (1915-2008) was a professor of Ethnomusicology at JTS, and a world-renowned scholar in that field, author of books and articles, lecturer, and producer of documentary films. Her collection includes the cultural treasures of the nearly extinct Jewish populations of India, Yemen, Azerbaijan, Egypt, and Armenia, as well as of the Samaritan people, offering a window into the life of these groups in situ before their dispersal from their native lands.

The Spector Archives offer a fascinating exploration of non-Western Jewish religious and communal traditions that developed and persisted over 2,000 years,? said Naomi Steinberger, director of Library Services at JTS. ?These materials are of immense value for a wide range of researchers studying ethnography, history, anthropology, and music. We are grateful to the Mellon Foundation and CLIR for providing the resources to make this extraordinary collection available to scholars, students, and the general public.?

Home to more than 400,000 volumes and more than 400 archival collections, The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary contains the largest and most extensive collection of Hebraic and Judaic material in the Western Hemisphere. The Library serves the students and faculty of JTS, and scholars and researchers around the world.

CLIR is an independent, nonprofit organization that forges strategies to enhance research, teaching, and learning environments in collaboration with libraries, cultural institutions, and communities of higher learning.
Posted by jmwc at 07:08 PM

January 25, 2013

JOB OPENING: Project Manager/Archivist

The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) is currently searching for a full-time Project Manager/Archivist. This is a sixteen-month grant-funded position that reports to the Administrative Librarian for Technical Services. The position is available immediately.

About The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary:
The Library of The Jewish Theological Seminary holds the foremost collection of Judaica and Hebraica in the Western Hemisphere, including manuscripts, rare printed books, periodicals, ephemeral materials, musical scores, sound recordings, moving images, graphic arts, and archives. It provides access to subscription databases and to its digital collections. The JTS Library serves the students and faculty of the institution in addition to the international community of scholars in Jewish studies and related areas. Please visit our web site at www.jtsa.edu/library.xml

Position Summary:

The full-time Project Manager/Archivist will be responsible for the processing of a complex archive in the area of Jewish Ethnomusicology. The position includes supervision of three part-time archival processing assistants.
Duties and Responsibilities:

* Responsible for all processing and cataloging of complex archival collection of Jewish music consisting of papers, music, photographs, slides and recordings.
* Responsible for creation of EAD finding aid utilizing Archivist Toolkit.
* Supervision of processing assistants.

MS in Library and Information Services with a concentration in archives or Archival Records Management. Knowledge of Jewish studies, ethnomusicology and/or anthropology preferred. Experience working with Archivist Toolkit to create EAD finding aid. Experience with DACS and MARC-XML. Ability to train and supervise part-time staff. Two to three years experience in archival processing and one year management experience preferred. Ability to work efficiently, keep track of detailed tasks in working with archival collections and meet specified project goals and deadlines.

Salary and benefits commensurate with experience.

To apply: Send cover letter, resume and three references by February 12, 2013 to: Diana Torres-Petrilli, Director of Human Resources, Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027.
Posted by jmwc at 03:22 PM

November 12, 2012

Journal of Synagogue Music Online

Many readers ask where to read articles on Jewish synagogue music. One place to start is the archive of the Journal of Synagogue Music, the publication of the Cantors Assembly. The archives of this journal is now online full text from 1967 to the present. The articles cover a wide range of topics within Jewish music, including biographical and historical materials as well as about specific pieces of music. You can keyword search the entire run, and then do a "find" in Adobe Acrobat for the location of your keyword inside a particular journal issue. The journal is located at:http://cantors.org/ca_jsm_docs.php and is available to the public.
Posted by jmwc at 11:33 AM

November 30, 2011

FAU Libraries Receive Gift in Memory of Barry Serota

FAU Libraries Receive Gift in Memory of Barry Serota, Executive Director of Chicago-based Institute for Jewish Sound Recording

BOCA RATON, FL. Florida Atlantic University recently received a gift in memory of the late Barry Serota, an attorney, record producer and executive director of the Chicago-based Institute for Jewish Sound Recording. Serota was widely known for his deep knowledge of Jewish music and produced more than 100 recordings of Jewish sacred and secular music. His productions at the Institute for Jewish Sound Recording included choral, instrumental, folk and art music. Serota s mother, Blanche, donated 1,500 LPs, more than 700 78-rpm discs, 100 digital audio tapes and 1,443 audio reel-to-reel tapes to the Judaica Sound Archives (JSA) at FAU Libraries in honor of her son. The collection includes rare record masters and pre-production one-of-a-kind recordings.

Barry Serota devoted his life to collecting great Jewish music and producing high-quality recordings, said Maxine Schackman, Ph.D., director of the Recorded Sound Archives at FAU Libraries. Although we knew this was a wonderful donation to the JSA, we really couldn t be sure what treasures we would find. Many of these recordings are legendary in the world of the cantorial arts.

Blanche Serota became acquainted with the FAU Libraries when Ben Roth-Aroni, JSA's sound technician, called to offer his condolences following Barry's death. During his youth, Roth-Aroni worked for Serota as a tape editor and greatly admired his expertise in the field of Jewish music. Roth-Aroni encouraged Blanche to visit FAU Libraries, and during her February 2011 visit, she arranged to donate her son s treasured collection to the JSA. She wanted to honor his memory, said Schackman. It comforted her to know that what he loved so much would find a warm welcome and a permanent home at the JSA.

The JSA has digitized and compiled a collection of 56 albums produced by Barry Serota. The recordings can be heard on the JSA website at http://faujsa.fau.edu/jsa/collection_album.php?collection=musique_internationale. For more information on the JSA at FAU Libraries or to volunteer, contact Maxine Schackman at 561-297-0080 or mschackm@fau.edu, or visit www.library.fau.edu/rsa.
Posted by jmwc at 12:32 AM

October 31, 2011

Important New Reference Work Now Available

Solo Vocal Works on Jewish Themes
An important new reference work has been published for identifying solo vocal works on all sorts of Jewish themes. This highly useful work gives an alphabetical list of composers with appropriate vocal works listed (not a complete list of works by each composer, but appropriately sticking to the scope of this volume). Many useful details, such as birth and death dates, place of birth, musical forces needed, first performance if known, translations of titles, and locations of scores. With some of the dramatic works, a lyricist might be named, as well as a brief synopsis of plot given.But the author doesn't stop there; he provides useful "themes", first based on the biblical texts, if used. In addition, he then provides themes such holidays, but also, "Jewish experience", children's material, philosophy, Holocaust or persecution, interfaith works, Jewish history, Yiddish theater, Sacred Services, and weddings. One can always quibble, but this author had found nothing but use in these divisions, geared toward the most likely individual and institutional use. He also takes the listings of works and provides a section by voice, so that a soprano or tenor might know which works fit their voice. The last two sections are an alphabetical listing of all the works, and a bibliography is also included. Jaffe rounds out the book by listing publishers and libraries which hold particular works. This is one of the most useful Jewish music reference works to come out in years. It's very thorough, easy to read and understand the logic and arrangements of the book. Mostly, this is a highly useful work that will help performers, cantors, educators and others find music to fit their events and occasions, to help develop programming and to help students develop repertoire. Congratulations are due to Kenneth Jaffe for a work well done. I would highly recommend this work be purchased by synagogue libraries, academic and public libraries, as well as home purchase for vocal artists who produce programming for Jewish events or are looking for new repertoire. width
Posted by jmwc at 10:31 PM

September 02, 2011

Journal of Synagogue Music Online

As you may know, The Cantors Assembly has digitized it's past issues of the Journal of Synagogue Music online. They are available in PDF format at http://www.cantors.org/ca_jsm_docs.php along with their conference proceedings. These journal issues are searchable in a general way... that is, a search term will be found from the search in all documents with that word, but the reader will have to open the specific issues (pdf) and then use his/her Adobe Acrobat reader's "find box" to pinpoint the keyword in the document. The reader must search each of the documents separately for the search term. Still, this is a remarkable addition to the study of Jewish music and having access to so many interesting articles from the last half century from distinguished cantors and writers is a tremendous boon to Jewish educators and all of us interested in Jewish synagogue music.
Posted by jmwc at 01:39 PM

July 29, 2011

Jewish Museum Media Center Exhibitions for Radio & TV, Music

THE BARBARA AND E. ROBERT GOODKIND MEDIA CENTER The Barbara and E. Robert Goodkind Media Centerhttp://www.thejewishmuseum.org/mediacenter features an exhibition space dedicated to video art and new media, and houses a digital library of 100 radio and television programs from The Jewish Museum's National Jewish Archive of Broadcasting (NJAB). Selections include such comedy favorites as "How to Be a Jewish Son," a panel discussion from a 1970 David Susskind Show featuring Mel Brooks; a 1947 radio drama entitled "Operation Nightmare" starring John Garfield and Al Jolson, produced by the United Jewish Appeal to call attention to displaced persons in postwar Europe; contemporary television documentaries on black-Jewish relations, Latino Jews, and klezmer music; interviews with artists such as Marc Chagall, Jacques Lipchitz, Larry Rivers, George Segal and Ben Shahn; and Manischewitz wine commercials produced between 1963 and 1981 featuring Sammy Davis, Jr. and Peter Lawford.

Episodes of such classic and contemporary television series such as Bridget Loves Bernie, Northern Exposure, The O.C., Seventh Heaven and Sports Night, as well as clips from The Colbert Report, feature interpretations of Jewish life-cycle events and holidays.

A selection of musical performances includes a Hanukkah-themed video from the Latino-Jewish urban band Hip Hop Hoodios, an appearance by the Hasidic reggae star Matisyahu on The Late Show with David Letterman, a radio broadcast of liturgy composed by modern Zionist composer Marc Lavry, and a documentary on contemporary music featuring Frank London of The Klezmatics, Debbie Friedman, and Pharaoh's Daughter.
Posted by jmwc at 09:57 AM

July 20, 2011

Hava Nagila Historical Collections

Along with the documentary made by Roberta Grossman and Marta Kaufman that aired on PBS in 2010, there have been a few historical collections putting up materials about Hava Nagila, the ubiquitous folk tune that has become part and parcel of the American Jewish experience. Here's some links to the history, video and archival materials that may be of interest to our readers.

First, the video, (fundraising promo about the PBS special from 2010): (about 10 minutes) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=molJ3Y6z97g

Second, the archival materials published on Flickr from the Jewish National Library in Jerusalem: http://www.flickr.com/photos/26577116@N04/sets/72157605304880455/

Images from, Sadagora, hometown where the melody was traced: http://pics.livejournal.com/edward_tur/pic/00320q7e

For years, the song text was attributed to Moshe Nathanson, but this claim turned out to be untrue. Later in life, Nathanson wrote to Idelsohn and apologized about accepting credit for the text, which Idelsohn had written. (You'll still find wrong information about that on the Internet on my sites.). Idelssohn Thesaurus has been digitized at JNUL http://www.jmwc.org/announcements/2005/09/jewish_national.html but is also for sale today from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Thesaurus-Hebrew-Oriental-Melodies-Idelsohn/dp/0933676999
Posted by jmwc at 04:05 PM

May 10, 2011

Judeo-Arabic Romanization table approved

The Library of Congress reports that the Judeo-Arabic Romanization table was approved in February, 2011 by the Library of Congress and the Committee for Cataloging: Asian and African Materials (CC:AAM) of the American Library Association. The table is now available online from the ALA-LC Romanization Tables webpage at http://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/roman.html . Bruce Chr. Johnson The Library of Congress Policy & Standards Division Washington, DC 20540-4263 USA
Posted by jmwc at 10:10 AM

April 24, 2011

Forgotten Woman Cantor in Jewish Week

The New York Jewish Week ran an article at the end of March on Julie Rosewald, the "Forgotten Cantor". George Robinson, a long-time music critic and observer of Jewish religious culture, interviewed Judith Pinnolis about her article on Julie Rosewald that appeared in the American Jewish Archives Journal. It seems that a woman served as a cantor during the 1880s in California at the Reform Temple. To read the article in Jewish Week:

To read the original article in AJAJ: http://americanjewisharchives.org/journal/
Posted by jmwc at 05:43 PM

September 13, 2010

Milken Archives Launches Unique Materials Online

The Milken Archive of American Jewish Music has launched their website with access through a Virtual Archive of music, video clips, interviews, biographical sketches, and articles about Jewish music and musicians. It is certainly one of the largest such collections in the world, and the materials are accessible to anyone. Those interested in American Jewish music will certainly want to mark this page or link to it for future explorations.

Posted by jmwc at 04:57 PM

July 30, 2010

Musica Judaica Online Reviews (MJOR)

The American Society of Jewish Music announces official release of MUSICA JUDAICA ONLINE REVIEWS, which has been operating under the Editorship of Dr. Judah M. Cohen of Indiana University since the beginning of the year.

Designed as an offshoot of Musica Judaica, the Society's journal which is published once a year, Musica Judaica Online Reviews (MJOR) not only allows us to publish reviews much closer to the publication date of the book or recording in question, but also guarantees a much wider circulation and distribution of the reviews, to all who are interested what is being written about in Jewish music. Moreover, at the same time, our goal is not only to share the reviews but to engage in discussion, with readers able to submit their comments (of course, moderated by our editor).

Reviews, on a broad variety of topics, ranging, for example, from "The Organ and Its Music in German-Jewish Culture" by Tina Frȕhauf, to "The Making of a Reform Jewish Cantor" by Judah M. Cohen, to "Jews, Race, and Popular Culture" by Jon Stratton, to name but a few, have already been posted on the MJOR website, with more to come this summer.

To subscribe to Musica Judaica Online Reviews, please visit its special website: http://www.mjoreviews.org . Your free subscription will allow you automatically receive e-mail notices of new reviews as they are posted on the site.

The publication of books about Jewish music is prolific. The American Society for Jewish Music (ASJM) is taking an leading role, and a variety of approaches, in disseminating information about them. Through Musica Judaica Online Reviews, the journal, the Jewish Music Forum, concerts and other projects and activities, the American Society for Jewish Music continues to provide important access to the field of Jewish music in all its aspects.

Posted by jmwc at 12:40 PM

May 17, 2010

Music Media Monthly

A new monthly online site that reviews music, by music librarians.
Posted by jmwc at 11:04 AM

March 06, 2010

Musica Judaica Online Reviews is now available

The Jewish Music Forum and the American Society of Jewish Music are pleased and excited to invite you to visit the new Musica Judaica Online Reviews , a scholarly online journal, at

“Musica Judaica Online Reviews is an open-access online journal that publishes reviews of books, films, significant events, and recordings chronicling all forms of Jewish musical expression.

This journal is an electronic edition of the reviews section of Musica Judaica, a scholarly journal that focuses on Jewish music research. Musica Judaica has been published by the American Society for Jewish Music since 1976, and caters to scholars, composers, cantors, rabbis, and laypeople interested in Jewish musical expressions.”
Posted by jmwc at 04:30 PM

January 20, 2010

Renowned Cleveland Music Collector Donates Jewish Recordings to FAU Libraries

Family of Renowned Cleveland Music Collector Donates Tens of Thousands of Recordings to FAU Libraries

BOCA RATON, FL – The family of Jack Saul, a renowned Cleveland music collector, has gifted about 10,000 unique Jewish records to Florida Atlantic University’s Judaica Sound Archives, which already held one of the world’s largest collections of preserved and digitized Judaic audio recordings. Another 50,000 vintage 78-rpm records from Saul’s collection will be used to establish a vintage records archive at FAU Libraries. In addition, 500 jazz LPs from the gift were added to the library’s extensive jazz collection.

Saul’s gift contained many rare and popular 78 rpms, LP albums and reel-to-reel tapes. While some of the recordings were new titles for the JSA, others were duplicates and replaced recordings in the archives that were not in as good condition. Some of the recordings had never been played, were sealed in their original wrapping and bore price stickers.

There were some complete collections of renowned Jewish performers, and such rare finds as a copy of Sophie Tucker’s 1945 Decca album featuring three 78 rpm records autographed by Tucker in November 1948; and the 1948 recording of “Brooklyn Baseball Cantata” with a copy of the sheet music, which originally sold for $1.25, written by Robert Merrill, one of the Metropolitan Opera’s most acclaimed baritones.

“This is, by far, the largest single donation of Judaica recordings we’ve ever received,” said Nathan Tinanoff, founder and director of the JSA at the Wimberly Library on FAU’s Boca Raton campus. “Jack Saul’s Judaica collection is in excellent condition and was said to be one of the finest private collections in the country. The JSA is fortunate to be the recipient of such a collection.”

Before he died in May at the age of 86, Saul visited the JSA in February. He became acquainted with the archives through mutual friends of JSA’s sound archivist Ben Roth-Aroni. Saul was so impressed that he told his wife, Hinda, and their children, Marlene, Howard and Ken, that he would like the Judaica portion of his collection to be eventually housed at the archives.

Music and collecting music was Saul’s passion and life. He bought entire collections from dealers and other collectors. His records spilled over into the basement, dining room, hallways and other living spaces of his home and place of business. After Saul’s death, his family discovered two floors of their family-owned furniture store packed with recordings floor to ceiling.

Tinanoff and JSA employees traveled to Cleveland several times to see, sort and box up recordings, before returning to Boca Raton to unload the first truckload in September. A second tractor trailer load of recordings will arrive from Cleveland in spring 2010 and will contain almost twice as many recordings as the first shipment.

Marlene Englander, a Cleveland musician and librarian, said it is fitting that a portion of her father’s collection was gifted to FAU Libraries, where educators, students and scholars will be able to use the recordings for research. “He was always sharing the collection with other people and making it available,” Englander said. “There were always people in our house listening to music.”

One fellow music lover who visited the Saul home to hear his Judaic recordings was Steven Greenman, a violinist whom Saul heard play at concerts in Cleveland. “Jack was a generous man and my colleagues in the klezmer world would call me when they were coming to Cleveland to see if they could visit Jack and see his famous record collection,” said Greenman. “Jack had a refined taste for music and readily said what music he liked and what he did not care for.”

Saul’s family donated other portions of his collection to such nonprofit institutions as the Library of Congress and the Cleveland Orchestra.

“These records were too rare and too valuable to pass up,’’ said Dr. William Miller, dean of Libraries at FAU. “Saul’s collection of 78s is certainly among the largest such collections in the country and perhaps the largest not already owned by a library.”

For more information on the Jack Saul Collection at FAU Libraries, contact Nathan Tinanoff at 561-297-2207 or tinanoff@fau.edu, or Dr. Maxine Schackman at 561-297-3765 or mschackm@fau.edu. More information about the JSA is located at www.fau.edu/jsa.

Posted by jmwc at 12:53 PM

October 30, 2009

Fanny Mendelssohn Portrait Exhibited

The Jewish Museum in NYC has a new acquisition: Portrait of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel, 1842, by 19th century German artist Moritz Daniel Oppenheim, has been added to the "Modernity" section of Culture and Continuity. The subject of this portrait was the sister of famous composer Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, a talented composer and musician in her own right. Fanny Hensel was the wife of a fellow painter, Wilhelm Hensel, whom Oppenheim met in Rome with the Nazarenes. Oppenheim, widely recognized as a portraitist, is known as the first Jewish artist to have benefited from the Emancipation, when new civil rights permitted Jews entry into academies of art for the first time in Europe. Extensively patronized by the Frankfurt branch of the Rothschild family, Oppenheim characterized himself (immodestly) as "a painter to the Rothschilds and the Rothschild of painters."
The Jewish Museum
1109 5th Ave at 92nd St
New York NY 10128
Posted by jmwc at 03:41 PM

October 21, 2009

Dubrow Talk on Lazar Weiner

YIVO is holding a conference on New York and the American Jewish Experience on Monday, Nov. 2, 2009.

The 4:15 to 5:30 pm afternoon session will include a paper by Marsha Dubrow, a musicologist at CUNY, on Lazar Weiner, and how Weiner's music was felt in different parts of the Jewish community. The paper will include illustrations and samples.

From 5:30 to 6:15 there will be an Evening Reception.

In the evening, from 6:15 to 7:30 there will be a Roundtable of Archivists on the Preserving the Treasures of Jewish Archives, with participation from 92nd Street Y Archives, American Jewish Committee Archives, Hadassah Archives, HIAS Archives, JDC Archives, Yeshiva University Archives and YIVO Archives.

For the full program and to register, please visit: http://yivo.org/events/index.php
Posted by jmwc at 08:01 PM

October 14, 2009

Journal for the Study of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewry

Academicians in the field of Sephardic and Mizrahi studies are invited to submit articles and contribute to this innovative, new journal. Among the many benefits of publishing with the journal is the short time span between submission and publishing compared to other journals. Moreover, the journal is free, fully online, and easily accessible to the general public via the journal website.

Part of FIU’s President Navon Program, the Journal for the Study of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewry has been an ongoing, interdisciplinary project which draws upon the expertise of leading scholars in the field and seeks to cover all aspects of the Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish experience.

The journal is a refereed, peer reviewed and interdisciplinary academic journal. Created to fill a lacuna in academic publications, the journal’s purpose is to provide an online platform for scholars to publish original, academic work that explores salient aspects within this burgeoning field of study.

To access the journal please use this link: http://sephardic.fiu.edu/journal/

For submission guidelines and a style/instruction sheet see: http://sephardic.fiu.edu/journal/SubmissionGuidelines_Journal.htm

Visit the website at http://sephardic.fiu.edu/journal/CallforPapers.htm
Posted by jmwc at 10:31 AM

October 04, 2009

Leo Zeitlin Chamber Music Comes to Life in New Critical Edition

Leo Zeitlin Chamber Music The music world involved in the revival of Jewish national music or recovery of early twentieth century art music of the first order will be dazzled by the new critical edition of Leo Zeitlin's Chamber Music published by AR Editions, and edited by musicologist and professors Paula Eisenstein Baker and Robert S. Nelson. Texts are presented in original Yiddish, Hebrew, transliterations and English translation.

But who was Leo Zeitlin? It's not a name in currency today, but is likely to be more familiar now that musicians will have a chance to perform this music, and it is highly recommended that college and university libraries purchase the volume. All but two of the selections are class art pieces based on Jewish themes.

Zeitlin, also known as Leyb or Lev Tseytlin or in Russian as Lev Mordukhovich Tseitlin, was born in Pinsk (now part of Belarus) in 1884. He went to Odessa to study music, studying violin and viola. In 1904, he auditioned for admittance to the St. Petersburg Conservatory and was accepted. He then went on to study composition with Rimsky-Korsakov and Glazunov. While there, Zeitlin joined the Society for Jewish Folk Music, a group devoted to the creation of new art works based on "ethnic" Jewish music and also serving as a publishing house. Four of Zeitlin's work were to be published by the Society. He left St. Petersburg and traveled to the Ukraine where he was appointed to the Imperial Music School in Ekaterinoslav (today Dnipropetrovsk) and also conducted there. After a stay in Vilna, he left for the US and arrived in 1923. In the US he worked as arranger, composer and violinist. In 1929, one of his pieces, Palestina, "a dramatic overture on Jewish themes," was performed for a radio audience estimated at over six million.

Along with a biography is the fascinating story of finding the works of Leo Zeitlin a half century later by Paula Eisenstein Baker. She traced down the materials, correctly identifying him as the composer of Eli Zion. The introduction includes discussion of the style of the composer in all its facets, and critical evaluations of the works, writing: "By any standard, Zeitlin's work is not just technically proficient, but always musical and expressive, and --above all--consistently inventive and imaginative." Detailed performance, historic and evaluative notes on each piece add an extraordinarily helpful resource to any performer. Works include piano vocal score and voice with quartet or chamber groups. For more details about various forces for the 32 items in this volume, refer to: https://www.areditions.com/rr/rrn/n051.html at the AR Editions website.

About the editors:
Paula Eisenstein Baker is an adjunct instructor of cello and chamber music at the University of St. Thomas, Houston, and has published several articles about Zeitlin and the Society for Jewish Folk Music.

Robert Nelson is professor emeritus of music theory and composition at the Moores School of Music, University of Houston. He received his DMA in composition from the University of Southern California, where he studied with Ingolf Dahl. His compositions and arrangements have been performed world-wide, and he has co-authored five widely adopted theory textbooks.

For those who read Yiddish, there is an article about this volume in the Yiddish Forverts http://yiddish.forward.com/node/2342
Posted by jmwc at 01:10 PM

September 09, 2009

British Archival Sound Recordings

Listen to recordings where copyright permits - currently over 23,700 items at the website of the British Library. http://sounds.bl.uk/Default.aspx.
Posted by jmwc at 12:19 AM

August 21, 2009

Baltimore Hebrew joins Towson University

The Judaic library of Baltimore Hebrew, the "largest array of Judaica in the mid-Atlantic region outside the Library of Congress," has been moving this summer to Towson University as part of a planned merger. The library hopes to be open on the second floor of the Albert S. Cook Library at Towson University by the end of August. Read the full story from the Baltimore Sun http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bal-te.md.bhu20jun20,0,1015335.story.
Posted by jmwc at 10:23 AM

June 10, 2009

More Time to Access Jewish Music in NYC

The Center for Jewish History, located in the heart of New York City, is pleased to announce that they have improved access to the collections of partners by extending the operating hours of the Lillian Goldman Reading Room and the Ackman & Ziff Family Genealogy Institute to five days a week!

Scholars, students and the general public now have the opportunity to conduct onsite research on Mondays from 9:30am – 7:30pm, Tuesdays – Thursdays from 9:30am – 5:30pm, and Fridays from 9:30am – 1:30pm.

In addition to offering extended hours, the Center provides access to our partners’ collections through its Online Public Access Catalog (www.collections.cjh.org), a unique tool that offers seamless searching of library, archival and museum holdings through a single portal.

Researchers can also view more than 1,200 electronic archival finding aids and two annotated bibliographies offered by the Center, Women in Daily Life: An Online Bibliography and Holocaust Resources: An Annotated Bibliography of Archival Holdings at the Center for Jewish History. The Center’s Holocaust bibliography is exceptional in that it emphasizes archival holdings, a rarity among Holocaust reference guides.

The Center for Jewish History is a partnership of five major institutions of Jewish scholarship, history, and art: the American Jewish Historical Society, the American Sephardi Federation, the Leo Baeck Institute, the Yeshiva University Museum, and the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. The combined collections of the partners have made the Center the single most important resource, outside of Israel, for the study of the history and culture of the Jewish people with access to over 100 million archival documents and 500,000 volumes.

To learn more about the resources of the Center for Jewish History and its partners, please visit www.cjh.org.

Posted by jmwc at 10:45 AM

March 03, 2009

Yiddish Books Online at Internet Archive and NYBC

Over ten thousand Yiddish texts, estimated as over 1/2 of all the published works in Yiddish, are now online based on the work of the National Yiddish Book Center, volunteers, and the Internet Archive.The literature of a people is being made available free to the world.

While some of the rights issues may be unclear, this collection has been greeted enthusiastically during the years it was available for print-on-demand. This community may offer a model for how non-profit libraries can support culture online. The Internet Archive would like to see more non-profit libraries offering complete collections to support communities that may be geographically distributed.

The Internet Archive now has a right-to-left book reader, and we’re working to ease importing of existing digital collections.

Posted by jmwc at 11:53 AM

June 20, 2008

Judaica Sound Archives at FAU Features Legendary Yiddish Entertainment Family on its Website

The Judaica Sound ArchivesR (JSA) at Florida Atlantic University Libraries has obtained the rights to offer on its website a major collection of performances by the Bursteins, one of the most enduring family names in Yiddish entertainment.

The JSA, located on FAU's Boca Raton campus, created the collection from holdings that had been donated to the archives at different times and from different sources. It includes 33 albums and features the combined works of Pesach Burstein, who produced musicals for audiences worldwide in the 1920s; his wife, Lillian Lux, who joined his troupe when she was 17; and their twins, Susan Burstein-Roth and Mike (Burstein) Burstyn. One can listen to the Burstein family audio collection and read about the family's accomplishments at www.fau.edu/jsa.

Mike Burstyn, the only member of the popular "Four Bursteins" who is still performing, said he is delighted to share his family's legacy with the world. "There is a resurgence of interest in Yiddish culture, but not many people are actually able to hear Yiddish the way it was spoken," said Burstyn, who lives in Los Angeles. "Being able to listen to these great old Yiddish songs will ensure that Yiddish will not become a dead language like Latin. This will be educational and an inspiration to future generations. I am extremely pleased with what the JSA has been able to accomplish."

Burstyn's appearances on Broadway, off-Broadway, and in concert halls in the United States, Israel, and around the world qualify him as a cross-over entertainer who is appreciated by both Yiddish-speaking and English-speaking audiences.

The history of the Yiddish musical theater as told through the experiences of the Bursteins was documented in the 1999 award-winning film, Die Komediant, which is now on DVD. The film, based on an autobiography that Pesach Burstein co-authored with his wife, was released after he died in

1986 at age 90. An English translation of Burstein's memoirs, edited by Gershon Freidlin, was published by Syracuse University Press in New York in 2003 and was titled: What a Life! The autobiography of Pesach'ke Burstein.

Lillian Lux died in 2005 at age 86.

Susan Burstein-Roth, a successful writer and philanthropist who lives in New Jersey, praised the JSA's online collection of recordings, many of which she herself didn't know existed. "I am extremely pleased, overjoyed," said Burstein-Roth. "I was so overwhelmed that it made me cry. The beauty of the website is stunning. It is just wonderful."

Burstein-Roth left the stage at 19 to marry and to raise a family. She is a passionate supporter of Israel, founder of the Eshet Chayil Foundation and has become very involved in the Davidic Dynasty project and the King David Museum.

The JSA has been accumulating recorded music and voices of the early 20th century since 2002. It has become a major center for the collection, preservation and digitization of Judaica audio recordings.

Posted by jmwc at 04:43 PM

July 10, 2007

Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity

Musicians should be aware of the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity. According to their mission statement, the Center is:
"A non-profit educational institution in both the United States and Israel, the Center functions as a global fellowship of creative and performing artists, scholars and benefactors committed to evolving the dynamic national Jewish culture envisioned by Zionist philosopher Ahad Ha'am. To preclude the fossilization of Jewish culture, the Center stimulates and facilitates the creation of serious new cultural works from a Jewish perspective and the dissemination of the resulting artistic expression in respected public venues, thereby broadening the horizons of Jewish culture and ensuring an ongoing Jewish contribution to universal civilization."
Lots of artists are participating in Israel and the US. For more information see:
Posted by jmwc at 03:22 AM

February 05, 2007

World of the Piyut in English

Top musicologists and other scholars from Snunit, Avi Chai Foundation, and Hebrew University, among others, have a new website with an English version up and running: An Invitation to Piyut. Accroding to the site: "There are two archives at the core of the website. The central archive is a collection of piyutim and melodies. Here you can find piyutim divided into various categories and run a general search on all of the piyutim. Each piyut has two central “pages.” The first offers an in-depth look at the piyut, presenting different perspectives of background, commentary, and explanation. The second is a list of melodies, including a range of melodies and performances of the piyut. The second archive contains texts and melodies not classically defined as piyutim – such as selections from Psalms or traditional Jewish prayers. This category of the archive is necessary because there is a close functional relationship between these types of texts and melodies and the world of piyut, both aesthetically and in terms of practical traditional uses."
You can explore, hear and read about this amazing collection of Jewish traditional music at:
Posted by jmwc at 10:48 AM

February 04, 2007

Happy 10th Anniversary JMWC !!

The Jewish Music Web Center is celebrating 10 years online this month! My first research bibliography and organized list of Jewish websites appeared in February, 1997. I went live with the www.jmwc.org domain name the following February-- making this our 10th anniversary year. In 1997, there were fewer than 75 websites devoted to Jewish music. Today, there are hundreds. The astounding growth of the Internet has allowed connections to people devoted to Jewish music all over the world.

Thank you ALL for a wonderful 10 years!


--Boston, MA

Posted by jmwc at 09:40 PM

January 27, 2007

Jewish Musicians Remembered

Much information from Isaachar Fater's book on Jewish musicians in Poland between the World Wars is now available through the Internet. There is a list of Jewish musicians who worked and lived in Poland between the two world wars. http://www.zchor.org/fater/musicians.htm
Posted by jmwc at 08:02 PM

January 10, 2007

Two New Discographies of Jewish Music

Julian Futter wrote: Dr Rainer Lotz, who was behind the 11 CD set "Vorbei" - Beyond recall, the survey of Jewish recordings in the Nazi era, has just released a discography of Jewish recordings in German speaking countries. "Discographie der Judaica-Aufnahmen". This book covers 78rpm recordings made from 1901 up to 1960. It is complimentary to Spottswood since Spottwood only covers recordings made in the USA. It is nearly 600 pages long and covers more than 400 performers. Covering all aspects of Jewish life, culture, religion and anti-semitism it therefore also includes entries for Thomas Mann, Ze'ev Jabotinsky and many of the leaders and functionaries of the 3rd Reich. Among other performers there are full details for S Kwartin, J. Rosenblatt, Julius Guttmann and many others. Although entirely in German, the material is so well laid out that a knowledge of German is not necessary to be able to make full use of it. It costs 60 Euros and can be obtained directly from him at Birgit Lotz Verlag, Jean Paul Str 6, 53173 Bonn, Germany email: disc@lotz-verlag.de

Tomasz Lerski in Warsaw has produced an extraordinary discography and history of the Jewish owned Syrena record label. Among the hundreds of artists who recorded for this label, before and after the First World War, were Belf's orchestra, Aaron Lebedeff, Sirota, David Oistrakh, Moses Kussevitsky, Wladyslaw Szpilman (the subject of Polanski's "The Pianist") and pretty much anyone who recorded in Poland. It is copiously illustrated and includes a biographical dictionary containing nearly 900 entries. However unless you can read Polish much of the information will be hard to decipher. This book has been an incredible labour of love and is an absolutely invaluable tool for any serious student of Jewish recordings and culture in Poland. It cost about 75 Euros It can be obtained direct from Mr Lerski at Blekitna 83, 04-663 Warsaw Poland or Rokosowska 7/5,02-348 Warsaw Poland. His email is tomasz.lerski@post.pl
Posted by jmwc at 07:48 PM

January 02, 2007

Center for Jewish History opens NEW joint catalog in 2007

The Center for Jewish History officially declared opening of a new joint catalog (for all 5 partners) through the Center's official website www.cjh.org This new catalog currently has records for the holdings of the library and archival collections of the Partners, which include YIVO, Yeshiva University Museum, Leo Baeck Institute, American Sephardi Federation, and the American Jewish Historical Society. Here is a link to the new catalog: http://aleph.cjh.org:81/F
Posted by jmwc at 02:13 PM

October 06, 2006

7th International Conference on Music Information Retrieval

The 7th International Conference on Music Information Retrieval, ISMIR 2006, will be held at the Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria, Canada, from Sunday October 8th to Thursday October 12th, 2006.

The annual ISMIR Conference is the first established international forum for those involved in work on accessing digital musical materials. It reflects the tremendous growth of music-related data available either locally or remotely and the consequent need to search this content and retrieve music and musical information efficiently and effectively. http://ismir2006.ismir.net/
Posted by jmwc at 10:35 AM

September 01, 2006

Judaica Sound Archives at Florida Atlantic University Libraries

Located in the Wimberly Library at Florida Atlantic University's Boca Raton, Florida campus, the Judaica Sound Archives has grown, since its inception in 2002, into a center for the collection and preservation of Judaica sound recordings. Its unique and rapidly expanding website (www.fau.edu/jsa) allows browsers to search their 78 rpm database by artist or song title, hear the recorded works of prominent artists, and learn more about the program to rescue recorded Jewish music. The JSA's collection includes Yiddish theater, Israeli folk, cantorial, and Sephardic music. Their goal is to be as inclusive as possible. Access to all of the digitized recordings in the JSA’s collection is possible through dedicated “research and listening stations” in the Wimberly Library. Off-site “research and listening stations” are planned for the future. The JSA gratefully accepts phonograph recordings of Yiddish, Hebrew and Sephardic music (both secular and religious) for inclusion in its collection. For further information call Nathan Tinanoff, Director, at 561-297-2207.

Posted by jmwc at 05:00 PM

August 11, 2006

WorldCat.org Now Available

OCLC, the central catalog organization of most major college, university and public libraries, announces the release of the new WorldCat.org Web site.

This site---and a downloadable WorldCat search box you can easily add to your Web site---opens the complete WorldCat database to the public, not just the smaller data subsets utilized by Open WorldCat partner sites such as Google, Yahoo! Search and others. WorldCat.org builds on the success of OCLC’s Open WorldCat Program that has elevated the visibility of library materials on the open Web since the summer of 2003.

The main attraction of the new site is the WorldCat search box. Web users can now search the entire WorldCat database with the method most familiar to them: simple keywords. As in Open WorldCat, each linked result leads to a "Find in a Library" information page. From there, users can enter geographic information such as a zip or postal code, receive a list of nearby libraries that own the item, and link right to a library's online catalog record to initiate circulation activity or access electronic content directly. Users can also create their own WorldCat account and add book reviews, table-of-contents information and notes to many WorldCat items, helping to personalize their library search experience.

From WorldCat.org, any Web user or organization can also easily download and install the free, WorldCat search box to their personal or commercial Web page, allowing even more people to discover library content through WorldCat. Libraries and other groups inside and outside the OCLC cooperative are encouraged to add the box to their sites. ... the ability to search for library materials to as many other sites as possible will help increase the awareness of libraries as primary sources of reliable information and helpful personal assistance.

In terms of music searching, the WorldCat catalog includes books, names of journals, 78s, LPs, CDs, DVDs, sheet music, scores and musical anthologies that are held by many libraries in the US, Canada, Europe and other places. To try the new WorldCat search box and download the box to your own Web site, visit the site at http://worldcat.org.
Posted by jmwc at 03:18 PM

July 06, 2006

Jewish National and University Library Digitized Books includes Song Books

The Jewish National and University Library's Digitized Books Repository continues to grow and now contains 340 titles of rare and out-of-print books.
Among the items added this week:
mi-zimrat ha-arets : American national songs in Hebrew / [translated by Gerson Rosenzweig] (New York, 1898) which contains the songs: "America, or My country tis of thee" (le-artsenu mizmor shir), "Columbia, the gem of the ocean (adom, lavan u-tekhelet), and "The Star spangled banner" (degel ha-kokhavim), along with notes for singing them in Hebrew.

The Digital Repository can be accessed via the Library homepage at:
or directly at:
It may be noted that this software to view the items works in Internet Explorer, but won't work with Mozilla or Firefox browsers.
Posted by jmwc at 01:40 PM

June 16, 2006

Jim Loeffler Explains

Jim Loeffler, a professor of Jewish history at the University of Virginia, and the director of the Jewish Music Forum, explains the origins of the song "Hava Nagila". You can read about it online at http://hillel.myjewishlearning.com/culture/Music/IsraeliMusicTO/IsraeliFolkMusic/Hava.htm
Posted by jmwc at 10:28 AM

March 26, 2006

New Additions to Mahler Archive Online

Teng-Leong Chew and James L. Zychowicz have announced that the following articles have been added to the Mahler Archives:

From Symphonic Poem to Symphony: The Evolution of Mahler's First Symphony
by James L. Zychowicz
Naturlaut 4(3): 2-7, 2005

Mahler's Sketches for the Tenth Symphony
by Steven D. Coburn
Naturlaut, 4(3): 13-18, 2005

Mahler's Sixth Symphony and the Challenge of a Critical Edition: A Cautionary Tale
by James L. Zychowicz
Naturlaut 4(4):2-7, 2006

Mahler's Sixth Symphony in Context: What the History of Minor-key Symphonies Can Tell Us about Mahler's Decision about Movement Order
by Stephen D. Chakwin
Naturlaut 4(4):8-11, 2006

American Performances of Mahler's Sixth Symphony
by Mary Wagner
Naturlaut 4(4):13-16, 2006

Gustav Mahler's Sixth Symphony: Toward a Critical Discography
by Steven Vasta
Naturlaut 4(4):19-20, 2006

Bruckner and Mahler
by Bruno Walter
Naturlaut 4(3): 9-11, 2005

Posted by jmwc at 11:38 AM

March 24, 2006

Brown University Launches Online Yiddish Sheet Music Collection

Brown University has launced a Yiddish Sheet Music Collection as part of its Center for Digital Initiatives. So far, it's a work in progress... they've digitized and catalogued about 200 pieces from holdings of around 2000 pieces of Yiddish sheet music. The project is impressive for ease of use, featuring both browsing and searching capabilities. The librarian who has catalogued this is Rosemary Cullen of the John Hay Library, featured in an article in the Forward on March 24 . The music is available for you to enjoy (non-commercially) online, and there are lots of rewarding images of the stars of yesteryear from the Yiddish stage . Go to the Center for Digital Initiatives, at http://dl.lib.brown.edu. Toward the bottom of the screen in the bottom navigation bar, click on "Collections". You will see many interesting digital collections. Toward the bottom of the page is the icon for the Yiddish Sheet music. Click on the picture and it will take you to the "home" screen of the Yiddish sheet music collection. At this time, the "search" and the "browse" are active. In the search area you will have "basic" and "advanced". where you can search. Congratulations to Rosemary and thanks to Brown for launching this!
Posted by jmwc at 10:12 AM

January 09, 2006

Harvey Sheldon Jewish American Music Video Research Library at UPenn

If you haven't already noticed, the Unviersity of Pennsylvania has a finding aid for its Harvey Sheldon Jewish American Music Video Research Library. This is "part of the University of Pennsylvania Library's Judaica collections, which is one of the largest and most distinguished in the world. In particular, the Sheldon collection complements Penn's reknown Robert and Molly Freedman Jewish Music Archive". This has VHS and DVD formats which include works by renowned Jewish composers and performances by some of America's outstanding singers. There is an entire section devoted to Broadway/Hollywood Musicals composed by Jewish Composers and lyricists , or performers and arrangers, ranging from such works as Annie Get Your Gun to Showboat.
Even if you can't make it to UPenn, your local public library may have many of the same items. It's an interesting mix and speaks to the increasing recognition of Jewish composers' contributions to American music in the twentieth century.

Posted by jmwc at 10:25 PM

September 15, 2005

Michael Lukin Catalogues the Dov Noy Collection at JNUL

Congratulations to flautist Michael Lukin on the completion of the Song Index to the Dov Noy Collection in the Jewish National University Library (JNUL) in Jerusalem. This event will be of world wide interest to those who love Yiddish and Hebrew songs. The project involved meticulous cataloging that allows a searcher to find individual songs within a large number of Yiddish and Hebrew song anthologies and other works in this collection. Each song is searchable in the vernacular including keyword, title and author (composer and lyricist) searching. In addition, the incipit of the song, that is, the opening lines, or in some cases, some line of the refrain which may be more identifying to the song, are included in the record. Searchers may try typing in their title or even just a word of the title (keyword) to find which volumes this song may be in. The incipits are included as an "alternate title field". The item record will also indicate which anthology the song comes from in the signature field. There is also a genres and origins fields, so there are geographic breakdown, sometimes to the village level, for searching song origins. Broader and narrower fields of geography are not available, but keyword searching may be able to pick up some of the broader geographic areas. The host item gives the bibliographic location (such as microform or in a printed book). There are over 13,400 individual songs indexed in this marvelous new research tool, including items from the Cahan book from YIVO, the Mlotek series published by Tara, the Hebrew University anthologies and much more. You can also "browse title" which will give a searcher all the versions of one song and the places they are published. Nice. Yes, Very Sweet.
To access the Song Index: First go to the Jewish National University Library Catalog:
At the Basic Search screen, use the pull down menu under "Select Database" (it's the top box, on the left side).
Choose either Music: Yiddish Songs Index or Music: Hebrew Songs Index
It's better to search in Hebrew and Yiddish script on your computer. Special thanks to Gila Flam for hosting my visit to the library.
Posted by jmwc at 02:03 AM

Jewish National Library in Jerusalem Digital Idelssohn

The Jewish National Library in Jerusalem has worked the miracle of digitizing, among other works, the 10-volumes of the Abraham Zvi Idelssohn Thesaurus of Oriental Hebrew Melodies, first published in 1923. Idelssohn, known as the father of Jewish musicology, participated nearly a century ago in field recording work in then Palestine. He recorded Jews and and non-Jewish residents of the area, taking meticulous notes both of speech, education and background of the informants, and transcribing into notation their songs from the wax cylinders her made there. From his field work and other research, he produced a ten-volume monumental study which became the basis of musicology of the various Jewish musics from throughout the world, both sacred and secular. Now, this marvelous resource of Jewish music is available online from the JNUL website. http://www.jnul.huji.ac.il/dl/books/html/bk_all.htm
Posted by jmwc at 01:48 AM

April 29, 2005

Leo Smit Foundation

The Leo Smit Foundation has a website dedicated to Dutch composer Leo Smit, who was murdered in a concentration camp in the second world war because of this Jewish origins. The website has a biography, a discography, a list of works, and some information on events of music by Leo Smit held at the Uilenburger Synagogue in Amsterdam.

Posted by jmwc at 12:56 AM

March 13, 2005

Folk Music Index

The Folk Music Index online is a fabulous on-line resource for tracking down some of those elusive folk songs you may be seeking. Although it says it's an index to recordings, it does include at least some print anthologies, as well. This resource also has several links to other good sources. http://www.ibiblio.org/folkindex/index.htm
Posted by jmwc at 04:40 PM

Jewish Music Available through Smithsonian Folkways

Smithsonian Folkways music available for download online... The complete catalog of Jewish recordings on the Folkways label, seems to be available through:
The site allows you to listen to small excerpts of most tracks, and to order the material on cassette or cd. These samples will allow people to know what they may wish to purchase and get a taste for the sound of the music... also to see "what's in the catalog" in the way of Jewish music

Posted by jmwc at 02:30 PM

November 19, 2004

Jack Gottlieb on LOC site

Jack Gottlieb wrote the book, "Funny, It Doesn?t Sound Jewish: How Yiddish Songs and Synagogue Melodies Influenced Tin Pan Alley, Broadway, and Hollywood.? At http://www.loc.gov/locvideo/gottlieb/, you can see and hear a talk he gave on September 20 at the Library of Congress. He plays and sings examples of American music, Hebrew prayer melodies, and music from the Jewish theater, to illustrate his thesis that they are not coincidentally similar.
Posted by jmwc at 12:27 PM

March 11, 2004

I Hear America Singing

The Music Division of the Library of Congress is pleased to announce the launch of a new Web site, I Hear America Singing (IHAS), a portal to the Library's music and performing-arts collections available at http://www.loc.gov/ihas/ The Library of Congress has holdings of many famous American Jewish composers and performers, including Leonard Bernstein and Aaron Copland, which will eventually be included in this collection IHAS.... (For more information about current online exhibits.... see the JMWC biographies at http://www.jmwc.org/jmwc_biography.html#b) for more on IHAS see entries ...


I Hear America Singing integrates the collections, commissions and live concerts of the Library of Congress, allowing users to discover the Library's music and performing-arts collections through a single gateway on the Web. The site brings together thousands of materials digitized from the Library's vast collections of sheet music, sound recordings, moving images, manuscripts, photographs, and oral histories, along with essays by Library staff and other leading researchers in the performing arts. It showcases the world-renowned tradition of live performing arts at the Library by featuring cybercasts of new concerts and offering a wide selection of historic concerts from the archives, including premieres of important works of contemporary classical music. It makes education a vital component by cybercasting performing arts-related symposia and panels held at the Library and making them available to users. I Hear America Singing will also become a "virtual community" for scholars, musicians, and music aficionados. Researchers will be able to comment online on the materials presented and share their own conclusions and insights about them. Content appealing to the K-12 community of teachers and students will be added in future releases. The debut release of I Hear America Singing offers the following special features: *Selections from jazz legend Gerry Mulligan's collection at the Library of Congress, including his previously unreleased oral autobiography, original scores and manuscripts, and recordings *"Life in Nineteenth-Century Ohio," a capsule example of how music reflects social history based on the lively musical life of Cincinnati a century and a half ago *"Patriotic Melodies," which features the stories behind of some of America's most important national songs *Walt Whitman's poem "I Hear America Singing," with an interpretation by the Library's poetry specialist and a reading of the poem by former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins *A collection of historical sheet music published from 1800 to 1922 Forthcoming additions to I Hear America Singing will include concerts performed at the Library of Congress, including specially commissioned pieces and cybercasts; Civil War sheet music; and African-American popular music from the early twentieth century. Please submit any questions you may have about this Web site to the Library of Congress's Music Division at: http://www.loc.gov/rr/askalib/ask-perform.html

Posted by jmwc at 03:09 PM

December 30, 2003

International Archive of Jewish Music

Burton A. Zipser, Director. Located in Southfield, Michigan, the mission of the IAJM is to discover, collect, preserve, and disseminate information about music for adult choirs and instrumental groups of varying sizes.

The International Archive of Jewish Music primarily is concerned with choral works of Jewish music. The Archive is part of a recognized non-profit. As of the end of 2001, over 1100 choral compositions are included in the choral section of the Archive. The Archive has also created a database of composers of Jewish music. There are over 1626 names in that database, with approximately 60% being cantors. Music has been acquired through contributions from composers, as well as discounted purchases from publishers' lists. Three collections have been obtained in either microfilm or xerox-flow versions and these are being catalogued. Because the Archive also has a performance "arm", it will be possible to present concerts of the music, and to work in cooperative efforts with publishers and composers to create recorded versions of the music which can be a further benefit to the composer or his/her estate.
All inquiries should be directed to: Burton A. Zipser
The International Archive of Jewish Music
c/o Oakland Performing Arts, Inc.
17333 W. Ten Mile Rd. Suite B
Southfield, MI 48075-2950
E-mail: zipmusic@bignet.net
Phone: 248-552-0025
Fax: 248-552-0027

Posted by jmwc at 11:14 PM