The Nigun Project: Through the Castle at Night

Music

In the Works: Yula Be’eri and Jeremiah Lockwood collaborate on ‘Through the Castle at Night.’
Shulamit Seidler-Feller
In the Works: Yula Be’eri and Jeremiah Lockwood collaborate on ‘Through the Castle at Night.’

By Jeremiah Lockwood

Published November 08, 2010.
  • Print
  • Share Share

For the Modzitzer Hasidim, the nigun played so central a role in the spiritual life that it nearly trumped the value of Torah learning in the eyes of the community. The great Modzitzer Rebbes were as much composers of nigunim and philosophers on the poetics of music, as they were men learned in the Talmud. The first Modzitzer Rebbe, Israel Taub (1849-1920), is the composer of the melody on which this recording is based. He referred to some of his nigunim as “operas” because they took the listener on a journey through an entire narrative. Reb Taub taught that the human soul is like the octave. Even as we ascend higher and higher, like the notes of a scale, ultimately we return back to our root.

My collaborator on this month’s installation of the Nigun Project is Yula Be’eri, known to the world as the leader of Yula and the Extended Family. She is also a member of Electro-Morocco and a former player in World-Inferno Friendship Society. Be’eri is one of the greatest talents I’ve ever met. She brings to her performances and composition an intuitive sense of the dramatic arc inherent in every gesture and every melody. We recorded this track in her home studio, taking a freewheeling and improvisatory approach to constructing the song.

As a wonderful bonus to working with Be’eri, Isaac Gardner, drummer for the Extended Family and former Blue Man Group Tube performer, showed up and added some of his trademark circus-like percussion flourishes to round out the texture of the piece. Gardner’s one-man percussion/performance art show, “We Are But Dust,” runs in New York City through November 14.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Happy birthday to the Boy Who Lived! July 31 marks the day that Harry Potter — and his creator, J.K. Rowling — first entered the world. Harry is a loyal Gryffindorian, a matchless wizard, a native Parseltongue speaker, and…a Jew?
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.