Sunday, February 13, 2011


Another Musical Note from Cantor Goffin of Lincoln Square Synagogue

MUSICAL NOTE by Cantor Sherwood Goffin

This is a response I gave to a questioner last month:

"I have been very closely associated with this song ever since I began my former folk-singing concert career back in 1962. I taught it at NCSY, Yeshiva U Seminars and everywhere I went. In 1970 I recorded a "Russian Jewry" version of the Little Bird for the Student Struggle for Soviet Jewry, on an album that featured SSSJ rally songs and Rabbi Riskin interviewing famous refuseniks.

The Little Bird was written by a 17 yr. old Bais Yaakov Camp Jr. Counselor, Millie Steinberg. She used the tune of an old Russian folk melody that was converted in 1948 to the beautiful "B'arvot Hanegev'; words by Menashe Baharav, who was also the accompanist to Shoshana Damari. Millie married Mr. Sachs and moved to Israel in the 1970's. I had asked her if she had other songs, which she did send to me, but I never sang them. I changed some of the words for public concert use, to make it scan better. On my hit album Neshomo (1972) we merely copied the above-mentioned version in the activist style of those years that spoke to the idea of peace and freedom. Many years later, on my 1996 album "Ish Echad," I recorded the original words for the first time." Now you know!


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