Building Singing Communities
A Practical Guide to Unlocking the Power of Music in Jewish Prayer (2011, Hadar).
“Building Singing Communities” is an easy-to-read, how-to guide to making music a lasting and joy-filled force in shul and Jewish life. In this short book, author, musician, and educator Joey Weisenberg presents us with a veritable treasure house of musical opportunities. “Just think how far we could come,” says Weisenberg, “if we treated the songs sung by our day-to-day, lay synagogue community as seriously as we do the music created by professional stage musicians? We could create an atmosphere of both great beauty and drama in our spaces of prayer; we would value each and every individual in our community as a creative musician, and encourage his or her efforts in an attitude of musical collaboration.”
“Building Singing Communities” is for the experienced musician and the musical layman alike. Its pages are full of practical guidance and heartfelt inspirationthe result of Weisenberg’s spending hundred of hours working hands-on with Jewish communities across the U.S. and abroad. Pick it up when you need advice for leading a class; keep it close at hand for inspiration about how to make your shul a more song-filled placeor even for what to sing at your Shabbos table. “It’s my hope that, with this collection of strategies you’ll re-actualize the talents and potential of your community,” writes Weisenberg, “reaping the benefits of re-starting what is, in fact, our beautiful, longstanding tradition of collective Jewish song.”
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Nigunim : The Songbook
A collection of sheet music for the first four albums of Joey Weisenberg’s “Nigunim” series.
This Songbook is a collection of sheet music for the first four albums of Joey Weisenberg’s “Nigunim” series, including:
Spontaneous Jewish Choir (2011)
Transformation of a Nigun (2012)
Live in the Choir Loft (2013)
Brooklyn Spirituals (2014).
In these compositions and on the accompanying recordings, you can hear older styles of Jewish music – nigunim (wordless melodies), z’mirot (Sabbath-table melodies), choral music, and traditional nusach (prayer chant) – organically melding with the spontaneous improvisation, liberated harmonies and indie soul music of the Brooklyn soundscape.
This music is for singing, together. Sing this music with others – at your table, in sacred spaces, and anywhere else where you might create spontaneous moments of collective beauty. Indeed, the nigun is the great communal musical art form of Jewish life. Please use these melodies to build your own singing communities!
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The Kane Street Songster (2011)
A collection of 105 Melodies for Shabbat and commentaries on the song-texts.
This collection of over one hundred Shabbat melodies captures the essence of an eclectic and evolving musical tradition at Kane Street Synagogue in Brooklyn, and provides a resource to inspire singing for many years to come.Culled from interviews with dozens of Kane Street members and singing visitors, these melodies come from different corners of the shul, and from different corners of the globe. Herein find melodies that came from Krakow, Buenos Aires, London, Berlin, Vilna, Jerusalem, Brooklyn, and Milwaukee, amongst dozens of other varied paths that Kane Streeters and their ancestors have traveled. Some of these melodies are over 200 years old, and some were written this year.Pick this book up before leading services to find a melody for L’cha Dodi, or at your table to remind yourself how to begin the first three notes of a zemer (table song) or nign (wordless melody). Learn about the liturgical texts in the commentaries by Rabbi Josh Gutoff, Rabbi Sam Weintraub, and Rabbi Simkha Weintraub. Smile, dance, and pour out your hearts in Jewish song!
To purchase, please contact the Kane Street Synagogue, 718-875-1550