Yiddish Romantic Mush
Every year around this time, secular and Christian culture in this country sell lots of chocolate and roses in memory of an alleged saint. In our house, worry about the saints of other cultures is a strong negative, but we are not necessarily free of the need for occasional romantic mush, so I put the question to the Jewish-Music mailing list. Folks came up with suggestions that should be on anyone's list of songs appropriate to this (or similar) occasions:
Dance leader Steve Weintraub, for instance, suggested: Leonard Cohen's Dance Me to the End of Love recorded by KCB (a recording that was on my own honeymoon soundrack), and "El Ginat Egoz," with the beautiful voice of Guela Gil and all of Gan Eden going on in the background (harp, flute, oboe, etc), and Veretzki Pass's Yussels Terkisher.
Lori Cahan-Simon focuses on songs, rather than versions, and starts off with a killer: "Sheyn vi di levone," continuing with "Oy, mame, bin ikh farlibt," "Dance Me Till the End of Time,", and her favorite, "A tremp bisti, gey vayter, gey".
From Eric Eric Myrvaagnes, we have "Bai Mir Bistu Shen" and "Sheyn vi di Levone"
Winnipeg Radio host Rochelle Zucker did a whole show on the subject: "Here was the playlist: A Program Lekoved Valentine's Day (Vos far a Yiddisher Yom Tov iz dos Epes???) Songs about Love, Love is Universal!!! Songs and Artisits featured:
- Shir Ha Shirim - Ben Zion Witler and Shifra Lerer
- Shoyn Fir Yor - Rebecca Kaplan and Peter Rushefsky
- Shayn Vi di Levone/Bay Mir Bistu Shayn - Der Faier (Argentina)
- Ikh Hob Dikh Lib - Jacob Sandler
- Papir Iz Dokh Vays - Abigail Rosenblatt
- Libst Mikh Golde (from Fidler Oyfn Dakh - Do you Love Me?) - Shmuel Rudensky and Lea Dulutskaya (Israel)
- Neshumele - Zully Goldfarb (Argentina)
- Gedenk - Fraidy Katz and Wolf Krakowski
- Yankele un Rukhele - Henry Gerro and Rosita Londner
- Libste - Karsten Troyke and others
- Ikh hob dir Tsu Fil Lib
- Ikh Zing
- Sylvia Schildt adds: How about "Ikh Hob Dikh Tsu Fil Lib" for starters, a very sexy tango. Or the Yiddish American "I Like She".
And from someone (Rokhl Kafrissen?), one last: Fyvush Finkel- "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" I HEART FYVUSH.
Of course, Israelis don't care. Saint, shmaint they say, as they shamelessly buy in to the commercial treacly stuff, "just like in America." So it goes.