Yiddish Song of the Week: ‘Afn beys-oylem’

Over at the An-sky Jewish Folkore Research Project , Forverts managing editor Itzik Gottesman, along with a few other contributors, has been poking through the nooks and crannies of Yiddish music and poetry on the Yiddish Song of the Week blog.

As quickly becomes clear from reading the blog, these aren’t your regular Yiddish standards. Rather, the featured melodies are generally lesser-known pieces, usually in the form of rare field recordings.

This week, Gottesman writes about “Afn beys-oylem,” (“On the Cemetery”) as sung by his grandmother, Lifshe Schaechter-Widman . The song is a version of Mikhl Gordon‘s “Di shtifmuter” (“The Stepmother”), but is an unusual example of his work. As Gottesman writes:

So a bit of a downer, maybe, but a beautiful, moving experience.

Listen to the song and read Gottesman’s whole analysis here.

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