Posts tagged: Benny Bell

Living in America

By , June 28, 2012 10:36 am

Now you can celebrate the 4th of July and your Jewish heritage at the same time.

This new compilation of songs from the Judaica Sound Archives at Florida Atlantic University Libraries in Boca Raton, FL is about the American Jewish experience.

It contains  Yiddish songs recorded during the early 20th century and expresses a Jewish immigrant perspective on New York, Coney Island and other things distinctly American.

You will also hear American patriotic songs sung by Jewish performers, Mike Burstyn singing about America in Hebrew and, from FAU’s Recorded Sound Archives Vintage 78s Collection, a very young Frank Sinatra singing “America the Beautiful.”

Click on the image above to hear this special compilation of songs from the JSA.

1. My America’s Free: Written byJerome Lipman and Irving Lewis. Sung by Molly Picon and Seymour Rechtzeit with the Abraham Ellstein Orchestra and Dave Tarras on clarinet. This upbeat tune lists some of the many things to love about America…..especially freedom!

2. Ich Dank dir Got fur America: Sung by Liebele Waldman.

3. America: Sung by Yiddish Theater star, Josef Feldman.

4. Yankee Doodle: This well-known Anglo-American song from the revolutionary War era is sung by Jewish singer/educator, Judy Caplan Ginsburgh.

5. I’m Going to Miami: Benny Bell tells a story of his trip to Miami Beach, Florida by train.

6. Hot Dogs and Knishes: Aaron Lebedeff sings this comic Yiddish song about Coney Island, NY.

7. Hurray far NY: This recording is from a 1967 recording of Pesach Burstein’s Yiddish Theater performance from “The Vilna Komiker.”

8. America Ich Lieb Dich (America I Love You): Sung by Yiddish Theater star, Gus Goldstein.

9. Ragtime Fiddle: Written by Irving Berlin and sung by Simon Paskal

10. Carry Me Back to Old Virginny: Originally a song sung by Confederate soldiers during the Civil War, it was recast in 1878 from the slave’s perspective. This 1916 recording by Jewish opera star, Alma Gluck, is said to have been the first operatic celebrity recording to ever sell a million copies.

11. Tell That to the Marines: Written during WWI,  sung by Al Jolson.

12. God Bless the USA: This recordingis from the Judy Caplan Ginsburgh album, Musical America.

13. America America: Mike Burstyn’s tribute to the land of his birth sung in Hebrew.

14. America the Beautiful: This recording by a very young Frank Sinatra is from FAU’s Recorded Sound Archives Vintage 78rpm music collection.

Celebrate klezmer!

By , February 27, 2012 9:41 am

4th Annual KULTUR FESTIVAL: A Celebration of Jewish Music and Arts

March 3—11, 2012

FAU Libraries, Boca Raton, FL

Can’t make it to South Florida?

You can join in the celebration of klezmer right here at the Judaica Sound Archives!

The word “klezmer” derives from two Hebrew words meaning instruments of music. The roots of klezmer can be traced back to 15th century Eastern Europe. Klezmer music incorporates Chassidic melodies, folk tunes, and Jewish celebration dances. However, most ethno-musicologists would tell you that what we refer to as “klezmer” in 21st century America bears very little resemblance to the musical compositions of 100 or 200 years ago. Today’s “klezmer” is like a  kaleidoscopic musical mirror that captures sound bits from the Jewish experience and reflects them back in new and sometimes wildly improbable ways.

Steeped in traditional Jewish sounds and melodies, klezmer is no longer chained to the shtetl. Today’s klezmer can be heard on the internet in Jewish homes around the world. Today’s klezmer can absorb interesting new flavors as the Jewish world of music expands.

Today’s klezmer music wakes up our Jewish cultural memory and provokes us to dance, to celebrate, to be Jewish!

Early klezmorim played the violin and other stringed instruments. Around 1855 the clarinet began to gain prominence. In the USA, clarinetists Dave Tarras and Naftule Brandwein spear-headed a klezmer revolution during the 1920’s. Today klezmer music continues to evolve.  It now includes everything from traditional renditions to mind-blowing fusions.

TheJudaica Sound Archives at Florida Atlantic University Libraries invites you to enjoy klezmer music from the past and the present.

Adrianne Greenbaum – FleytMuzik Klezmer music for flute

Benny Bell – To the Bride

Effy Netzer and his band – Folk Dance in Israel Today

Harry Kandel- Kandel’s Orchestra (1917-1918) Vol. 1

Klezmer Company Orchestra – Beyond the Tribes

The Original Klezmer jazz Band

Paul Green – Klezmer East

Rudy Tepel and his Orchestra- Lubavitch Wedding

Yiddishe Cup – Klezmer Guy

Love and Laughter

By , February 8, 2010 11:31 am
Left to Right: Nathan Tinanoff, Maxine Schackman, Chuck Samburg, Gloria

Chuck Samberg and Gloria Magida (on right) visit the JSA to donate recordings to Nathan Tinanoff and Maxine Schackman (holding record album).

Valentine’s Day is certainly not a Jewish holiday.  But who says Jews can’t celebrate love?

The Yiddish word, beshert, can refer to any kind of fortuitous good match, such as finding the perfect job or the perfect house, but usually it refers to a perfect romantic match. Beshert brings people together no matter what obstacles might stand in the way.  “If it is meant to be, it will be.”

Chuck and Gloria connected romantically back in the early 1960s, after her first husband passed away.  They dated, they married.  But the time was not right for these two to live happily ever after. After five years they divorced and lost contact with each other.

But when two people share a destiny they will find a way to reconnect with each other, even after many years. Chuck’s father was a pioneer in Jewish comedy back in the 1930s. Known professionally as Benny Bell, he was a celebrity in Jewish circles.

When Gloria’s third husband passed away a few years ago she became interested in reconnecting with friends from her past. She especially wanted to reconnect with Chuck. Unfortunately, she had no idea how to find him.

Many times she sat at her computer and typed the name “Charles Samberg” into the Google bar only to be disappointed by the lack of results.  Then one day she typed in the name “Chuck Samberg.”  This time she got a link to FAU’s Judaica Sound Archives.

BennyBell Album

Her curiosity aroused, she decided to follow the link which led to one of the happiest surprises of her life!  What she found on the JSA website was 19 comedy albums by Benny Bell.  As she listened it brought back many memories of her childhood. And then she went to the Benny Bell biography page. And there, at the bottom of the page was a way to reconnect with her past. She couldn’t believe her eyes.

Send-a-Note

She sent a note. Now the two are reunited and enjoying every moment of it, looking back at the past with nostalgia, looking towards the future with joyful thoughts. “We’re very happy!” Gloria to me.

For more information about Benny Bell click here.

Submitted by Maxine Schackman, JSA  assistant director.

The trail of our vinyl

By , December 18, 2009 3:49 pm

                                                                                                                                                 Josh Kun__SS500_                                                                                                                                                                                      

I was listening to my local public radio station while I was driving to work the other day. Roger Bennett, co-author of And You Shall Know Us By the Trail of Our Vinyl, was talking with Marco Werman about his attempt to save decades of American Jewish music from obscurity.

We, at the JSA, are very proud of our participation in helping Roger and his co-auther, Josh Kun to find materials that eventually found its way into their wonderful book.

Even though he didn’t mention us by name, we knew who Roger was talking about when he mentioned visiting Boca Raton, Florida, “where old Jewish vinyl goes to die.” When JSA Director, Nathan Tinanoff listened to the interview he told me, “He got that wrong! The JSA isn’t where old Jewish vinyl goes to die.  It is where it goes to be reborn!”

The book is a wonderful compendium of stories, information, photos, and album covers from the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s.  

Josh Kun, Associate Professor of communication and journalism at USC Annenberg School for Communication and the author of Audiotopia: Music, Race, and   America, which won a 2006 American Book Award, co-authored the book with Roger Bennett who also co-authored Bar Mitzvah Disco

The authors write about how they “encountered the Judaica Sound Archives of Florida Atlantic University, where Nathan Tinanoff and his devoted staff generously opened their collection to us.”  And where they found “thousands of LPs, shelf after shelf filled with dsicarded cardboard and vinyl that we gushed over like scientists marveling at new speciments” (p.17).

Looking through the book is an education and a trip down memory lane. From Steisand to Bagels and Bongos by the Irving Fields Trio, from Molly Pecon to the Four Bursteins, from Neil Sedaka to Theodore Bikel, the names and images pop off the pages.

The following JSA featured performers are highlighted in the book: Cantor Yossele Rosenblatt, Oysher-Michaels Family, Benny Bell , The 4 Bursteins, Gladys Gewirtz, Shimon & Ilana Gewirtz, Gadi Elon.

 A friend of mine who loves the book told me that when she goes on the JSA website it is like the “book comes to life” right on her computer. I can’t think of a nicer compliment.

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