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High Holidays 2020/5781

Original Music

Original Music for High Holidays 2020/5781

This material has been graciously shared with the public by the musicians below. If you would like to submit original music for inclusion here, please visit this page for our submission guidelines and procedure.

 


High Holiday Season

Songs in this section draw on themes and prayer texts that apply throughout the High Holiday season, from the beginning of the month of Elul to the end of Yom Kippur. 

 

“Achat Sha’alti” (Psalm 27) by Rabbi Emily Cohen

Achat Sha’alti by Rabbi Emily Cohen

 

“Achat Sha’alti” (Psalm 27) by David Alon Friedman

Performers: Combined choirs of West End Synagogue (New York, N.Y.) and Mosaic Law Congregation (Sacramento, Calif.); Conductor: Brian Kreiswirth; Pianist: David Friedman

Achat Sha’alti - David Alon Friedman - SATB+Piano

 

Achat Sha’alti” by David Lefkowich

Achat Sha’alti (DLefkowich) by DLefko

Chord Sheet:  

 

“Adonai Ori / You Are My Light” (Psalm 27) by Rabbi Dayle Friedman

This is a setting for the opening lines of Psalm 27, the penitential Psalm, which in Jewish tradition is recited every day in the month before Rosh Hashanah, the New Year. I find these words comforting and supportive of the challenging work of teshuvah, turning and returning toward our best, most whole selves. Accompaniment is by Peter Simpkins.

Adonai Ori–You Are My Light by Rabbi Dayle Friedman

Lyrics

 

“Beauty” by Will Robertson

This original song of mine has become a beloved tune to our congregation, and especially in this time when so much feels shifting and at risk, it has felt really important and grounding to be able to take in the beauty of the world that surrounds us. © 2011 Gallop Music (ASCAP) Sheet music available on request.

Beauty (Will Robertson)



 

“Do Not Be Daunted” by Emily Bengels

This song is based on “Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief.”

Do Not Be Daunted by Emily Bengels

Sheet Music: 

 

Eyeh Asher Eyeh” by Gayanne Geurin and Will Robertson

Mx-GG Emet ‘20.0827 MIX 3 EMET by Gayanne Geurin

For High Holy Days 5781 - A message for listening at this critical time in humankind’s relationship to the Earth. Psalm 85:12 - Emet M’Eretz Titzmach /  For all truths emanate from the earth. Truth springs up from the Earth

 

“Gesher Tzar Me’od” by Joanie Calem

Gesher Tzar Me’od by Joanie Calem

Lyrics: 


 

“HaRofei Lishvurei Lev/Healer of the Brokenhearted” (Psalm 147) by Rena Branson

HaRofei Lishvurei Lev (Healer of the Brokenhearted) — Psalm 147 by Rena Branson


 

I Will Carry You/V’Ad Seva (Inspired by Isaiah 46:4)” by Rena Branson

I Will Carry You/V’ad Seva — Inspired by Isaiah 46:4 by Rena Branson


 

“La’asok B’tzorchey Tzibbur” by Rabbi Margot Stein and Rabbi Jeremy Schwartz

This blessing for the work we do on behalf of others, for the common good, was commissioned by Reconstructing Judaism to commemorate the 11 year board service of David Roberts. Try using it to set the tone for communal prayer and to begin events with the intention of using our time together to make a difference.

Laasok B - Tzorchei Tzibur by Margot Stein

Music with Chords: 

 

“Limnot Yameynu” (Psalm 90) by Rabbi Margot Stein

Psalm 90 is recited throughout the Yama’im Nora’im and is particularly poignant at times when we meditate on the meaning of life and death. This version focuses on the blessings that we have received, and how wisdom can help us count them.

Limnot Yameynu by Margot Stein

Lyrics: 


 

“Listen” by Joanie Calem

Exploration of themes from the Shema prayer

Listen by Joanie Calem

Lyrics: 

 

“Luley” (Psalm 27) by Rabbi Margot Stein

Psalm 27 is recited daily from the first of Elul through the end of Sukkot. This version focuses on the final two lines of the Psalm.

Luley by Margot Stein

Lyrics:

Sheet Music: 

 

Modim Anachnu Lach” by David Lefkowich

In this setting, I use the words “modim anachnu lach” as a refrain between many sentiments of things I/we appreciate. This melody has “traveled” a bit, and others have added verses describing their “modim moments”. It is meant to be flexible in that way. I hope you enjoy it.

Modim Anachnu Lach (DLefkowich) by DLefko

Chord Sheet: 


 

“Oseh Shalom” by Joanie Calem

Oseh Shalom by Joanie Calem

Lyrics: 


 

Petach Libi/Libenu” by Rena Branson

From the end of the Amidah, all services

Petach Libi/Libenu (from end of the Amidah) by Rena Branson


 

Pitchu Li” by David Lefkowich

Pitchu Li (DLefkowich) by DLefko

Chord Sheet: 


 

“Renew - Hashivenu” by Rabbi Hannah Spiro

Renew - Hashiveinu

Chord Sheet: 


 

“The Narrow Bridge” by Emily Bengels

This song based on Rabbi Nachman of Breslov’s prayer “Life is a narrow bridge but the main thing is not to fear.”

The Narrow Bridge by Emily Bengels

Sheet Music: 

 

“Uvacharta Bachayim”/We Choose to Live (Devarim 30:19) by Rena Branson

U’vacharta Bachayim/We Choose to Live (Devarim 30:19) by Rena Branson


 

“Vayashan Mip’ney Hadash / When Old Makes Way For The New” by Rabbi Rayzel Raphael

Vayashan Mip’ney Chadash by Rabbi Rayzel Raphael

Lyrics: 

 


Erev Rosh Hashanah

 

Hashkivenu” by Lorenzo Valensi

For Shabbat/Rosh Hashanah Evening. This piece uses Hebrew and English excerpts of the prayer; the English is taken from the Kol Haneshamah siddur.

Hashkivenu by Congregation Ner Shalom

Sheet Music: 

 

“V’Shamru” by Cantor Marcelo Gindlin

(for Rosh Hashanah falling on Shabbat)

V’shamru by Cantor Marcelo Gindlin

Sheet Music: 

 

“Achot Ketana” by Will Robertson

Our update of the ancient melody of Achot Ketana, a piyyut used in the Rosh Hashanah liturgy. The band, choir and drum loops dance this prayer to life. “Let the year and its curses end, and let the new year and its blessings begin!”  Performed by the Chorus and Band of Congregation Bet Haverim. Originally released on the 2013 album Wheels Within Wheels.

Achot Ketana by Will Robertson

 

 


Erev Rosh Hashanah or Kol Nidrei (Evening Services)

 

“Candle Blessing for Yom Tov” by Cantor Marcelo Gindlin

Candle Blessing for Yom Tov

Sheet Music: 

 

“Hashkiveinu Lullaby” by Will Robertson

A choral setting of the Hashkiveinu prayer from the evening liturgy. This was a lullaby I wrote for my daughter when she was a baby.  Performed by the Chorus of Congregation Bet Haverim, Atlanta, GA. Originally released on the 2013 album Wheels Within Wheels. Selected for the Shalshelet New Jewish Music Festival, 2013. Sheet music available upon emailed request.

Hashkiveinu Lullaby by Will Robertson


 

“Ahavat Olam” by Will Robertson

My choral setting of Ahavat Olam. When we sing this in services, we surround the congregation at the end of the piece and invite them to sing with us. Performed by the Chorus of Congregation Bet Haverim, Atlanta, GA. Originally released on the 2013 album Wheels Within Wheels. Selected for the Shalshelet New Jewish Music Festival, 2013. Sheet music available upon emailed request.

Ahavat Olam by Will Robertson

 

“Unending Love” by Lorenzo Valensi

This is an upbeat, joyful setting of Rabbi Rami Shapiro’s “Unending Love,” as found in the Kol Haneshamah siddur.

Unending Love by Congregation Ner Shalom

Sheet Music: 

 


Rosh Hashanah Morning Service
 

“Chana’s Song” by Sam Tygiel; arranged and sung by Rebekka Goldsmith

This nigun (wordless melody) is inspired by the haftarah for the first day of Rosh Hashanah: the story of Chana, upon the birth of her son Shmuel/Samuel. “I imagine Chana singing with Shmuel in her arms. She is singing the secrets she has discovered through her practice of prayer….through her suffering. She is singing him the secrets of the universe. The secrets of G?d. I close my eyes and sing, imagining I am her, that I have what to sing to this child…though I know he won’t yet understand.” - S. Tygiel

Chana’s Song by Rebekka Goldsmith

 


Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur Morning Service
 

“Tzadik Katamar” (Psalm 92) by David Alon Friedman

(for Rosh Hashanah falling on Shabbat)

Tzadik Katamar - David Alon Friedman - Nashirah (Virtual)

This video is a virtual performance of “Tzadik Katamar” (Psalm 92:13-16) Composer: David Alon Friedman. Performers: Nashirah - the Jewish Chorale of Greater Philadelphia. Nashirah Artistic Director: Dr. Julia Zavadsky. Collaborative Piano: Soyeon Bin. Recorded in May 2020. This performance and recording is dedicated to the memory of Hannah Reich (March 2002 - May 2020).


 

“Circle of Love” by Rabbi Rayzel Raphael 

(for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur morning service — a four-part chant based on Ahavah Rabbah)

Circle Of Love by Rabbi Rayzel Raphael

Lyrics: 

 

“Ki Hiney Chachomer/As a Lump of Clay” by Rabbi Emily Cohen

This piyyut, often included during High Holy Day liturgy, compares the human experience to that of various inanimate objects under skilled craftsmanship. While an interventionist divinity like that described in the piyyut is not entirely reflective of my own theology, the notion of being held and influenced by something greater than ourselves resonates for me.

Ki hiney chachomer b’yad hayotzer birtzoto marchiv uvirtzoto m’katzer. Kein anachnu v’yadcha chesed notzeir labrit habet v’al tefen layetzer

As a lump of clay held in the sculptor’s hand / As the sculptor shapes it, it will stretch and expand and grow small / So are we in your hand. Please, let love prevail. / Look to the promises you made and don’t let anger set our fate

Ki Hinei Chachomer/As a Lump of Clay


 

“Who Will Be Gone?” by Irwin Keller

An interpretive setting of the “Who by Fire” query of Unetaneh Tokef. How do we live with the uncertainty of the length of our days and the circumstances of our deaths? With teshuvah, tefilah and tzedakah: “coming home to our hearts, giving blessing out, and being people of justice can lighten the burden of this difficult world.”

Who Will Be Gone? (Unetaneh Tokef) by Congregation Ner Shalom

Sheet Music: 

 

“A Thousand Generations” by Emily Bengels

For yizkor and for the 13 Attributes of Mercy (slichot)

A Thousand Generations by Emmyb2

Lyrics: 

 


Yom Kippur

 

Yom Kippur Morning
 

“Ner Adonai” by Gayanne Geurin

The text for this chant can be found in the Yom Kippur Morning Liturgy for Reconstructing Judaism’s New Liturgy for High Holidays 2020/5781. It is under the section “Light”.  Ner Adonay nishmat adam hofays kol-hadray-vaten / My soul is the flame of God that searches the inner chambers. (Proverbs 20:27)

Ner Adonai by Gayanne Geurin

 

“This Be Dear to Me” by David Berkeley

The text for this contemporary psalm can be found in the Yom Kippur Morning Liturgy for Reconstructing Judaism’s New Liturgy for High Holidays 2020/5781. Performed by the Chorus and Strings of Congregation Bet Haverim  | Arranged  for chorus, strings and piano  by Will Robertson

This Be Dear to Me

Lyrics: 

 

Family Services
 

“Slicha” by Joanie Calem

Slicha by Joanie Calem

Lyrics: 

 

“Yetzer HaRov, Yetzer HaRa” by Joanie Calem

Yetzer HaTov, Yetzer HaRa by Joanie Calem

Lyrics: 

 

Musaf
 

“U’vechen Yihi Ratzon” by Charles Bernhardt

U’vechen Yihi Ratzon- 7:30:20, 11.59 AM by CantorCharlie

Lyrics: 

 

Avodah Service
 

“Eyeh Asher Eyeh” by Gayanne Geurin/Will Robertson

Eyeh Asher Eyeh is in the Yom Kippur morning liturgy for the Reconstructing Judaism’s New Liturgy for High Holidays 2020/5781. You will find it in the Avodah Service. 

Mx-CBH Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh by Gayanne Geurin

 

Yizkor:
 

“Adonai Ro’i” (Psalm 23) by Cantor George Henschel

Adonai Ro’i by Cantor George Henschel by Cantor George

Lyrics: 

 

Yah, My Shepherd” (Psalm 23) by Cantor George Henschel

Yah, My Shepherd By Cantor George Henschel by Cantor George

Lyrics: 

 

 

Ne’ilah

 

“At the Closing of the Gates” by Irwin Keller

This is a simple and haunting call-and-response lead-in to the Ne’ilah Service.

At the Closing of the Gates by Congregation Ner Shalom

Sheet Music: