Monday, October 30, 2017

Un Mir Zaynen Ale Brider

Yiddish Performance of the Week

Un Mir Zaynen Ale Brider (“And We are All Brothers”) is a traditional Yiddish folk song and a long-time favourite of the old-time leftist-leaning Yiddish workers and labour movement. The lyrics are based on a poem (“Akhdes” or Unity) by Morris Winchevsky [born as Leopold Benzion Novokhovitch in Yanove, Lithuania in 1856–died in New York City in 1932], who himself is an interesting and important figure in di Yidisher velt. Speaking of which, you can also listen to another inspiring version performed by The Yiddish Community Chorus of Boston Workmen’s Circle. This wonderful and energetic song, about the desire and need for Jewish unity, has helped and encouraged me to think about this: Yidn kenen hobn file meynungen, ober dos zol keynmol teyln aundz. mir zenen, nokh ale, eyn mentshn.
Via: Youtube

Un Mir Zaynen Ale Brider
by Morris Winchevsky

Un mir zaynen ale brider, oy, oy, ale brider Un mir zingen freylekhe lider, oy, oy, oy Un mir haltn zikh in eynem, oy, oy, zikh in eynem Azelkhes iz nito bay keynem, oy, oy, oy Oy, oy, oy... Un mir zaynen ale eynik, oy, oy, ale eynik Tsi mir zayen fil tsi veynik, oy, oy, oy Un mir libn zikh dokh ale, oy, oy, zikh dokh ale Vi a khosn mit a kale, oy, oy, oy Oy, oy, oy... Un mir zaynen ale shvester, oy, oy, ale shvester Azoy vi Rochl, Ruth, un Esther, oy, oy, oy Un mir zaynen ale freylekh, oy, oy, ale freylekh Vi Yoynoson un Dovid HaMelekh, oy, oy, oy



  1. A polyglot performance.
    Beautiful and stimulating.

  2. The melody (from Poland?) is also used in a Polish folk song (recently made famous in the film "Cold War"). I wonder which came first - the Polish folk song and melody, or the Yiddish melody and song, whose tune was adopted in Poland? I'd be very interested to know! (My first language was Polish, many Polish folk melodies I learnt as a child use the Freygish scale and sound like some Jewish songs and dance tunes I've learnt since (playing trumpet in a klezmer band)).

    These are the Polish lyrics
    ("Two hearts and four eyes ...."
    Dwa serduszka cztery oczy łojojoj
    Co płakały we dnie w nocy łojojoj
    Czarne oczka co płaczecie, że się spotkać nie możecie
    Że się spotkać nie możecie, łojojoj
    Mnie matula zakazała łojojoj
    Żebym chłopca nie kochała łojojoj
    Starzy o miłości mają, młodym kochać zabraniają
    Młodym kochać zabraniają łojojoj
    Kiedy chłopiec Boże miły łojojoj
    I któż by miał tyle siły łojojoj
    Kamienne by serce było, żeby chłopca nie lubiło
    Żeby chłopca nie lubiło łojojoj
    Mnie matula zakazała łojojoj
    Żebym chłopca nie kochała łojojoj
    A ja chłopca hac! za szyję, będę kochać póki żyję
    Będę kochać póki żyję łojojoj

    1. Thank you for; many times during history there has been a sharing and borrowing of music.


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