Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Hands Down, A Touchy Subject

Kohane of Newark, in partnership with indie icon J.D. Foster has completed a wonderful new setting for the enticing old song, " Yad Anugah". Ofra Haza was fond of this piece, but our rendition, with an incredibly rich new arrangement, and new English translation is bound to heat things up a bit.

"Yad Anuga has an interesting history. Its text comes from a poem, “Et Kol Liba Masra Lo” (She Gave Him All Her Heart) by the peripatetic Zionist writer Zalman Shneur (1887-1959), which first appeared in a London periodical called HaMe’orer (The Awakener) in 1906. The poem became known throughout the Jewish communities of Europe, and it was apparently in Vilna, during the first decade of the 20th century, that it was first sung -- to an entirely different melody. Meanwhile, the poem made its way to Palestine where, like so many other texts, it “acquired” its present tune, attributed to the Bedouin folk tradition. When the “new” version made its way back to Europe it replaced the “original” melody, and became well known as a “song of the pioneers.” It has appeared in print with the present tune since the 1920’s." (MBE)

Kohane of Newark introduces listeners to the aural landscape and lyric mythology of an American-Jewish middle class experience in a way that David Byrne might appreciate. This is highly subversive stuff…

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