Wondering what to do with all that Chanukah gelt in the way of gift certificates or cash?… JMWC can recommend a few musical solutions, one sest for the classical repertoire and one for YIddish.

Paul Ben-Haim, Vol. 2 on Centaur CRC 2766 and Piano Music of Paul Ben-Haim on Centaur CRC 2506
Gila Goldstein, piano, Yehonatan Berick, violin, Inbal Segev, cello and Alexander Fiterstein, clarinet are featured on the 2766 and Gila Goldstein is soloist for 2506. The works are (2766) Music for Piano 1957, op 53, Variations on a Hebrew Melody for Piano, Violin and Cello, Chamsin for Piano solo, Pastorale Variee for Clarinet and Paino, op. 31b and Music for Piano 1967, op. 67. The works for 2506 are: Sonatina, op. 38; Melody and Variations, op 42, Suite No. 1, op. 20a, Suite No. 2, op. 20b, Sonata, Op. 49 and Five Pieces, Op. 34. This repertoire is not as widely known in the United States as it should be. The pieces reflect Ben-Haim’s efforts to create an Israeli national style while retaining the influences of his European background and training. These works for solo piano and those small chamber ensembles will be the perfect background to snowy afternoons or evenings this winter and beyond. These works are available through Amazon and elsewhere.

Af Di Gasn Fun Der shtot by Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman
This collection of recently composed Yiddish songs reviewed earlier on JMWC:
Featuring: Michael Alpert, Sharon Bernstein, Adrienne Cooper, Margot Leverett, Frank London , Peter Rushefsky, Binyumin Schaechter, Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman, Lorin Sklamberg, Deborah Strauss, and Theresa Tova.
In addition, special care was obviously taken to match the song with the performer, because each of the voices is especially fitted and suited to that selection, in their timbre, mood, and interpretations of the songs. Having heard numerous albums by each of the performers, I was highly impressed by the tight fit of selection to singer. New to me is the delightfully clear voice of Sharon Jan Bernstein. Adrienne Cooper and Theresa Tova were perfect in every nuance. This “all star cast” included Michael, Margot, Frank, Deborah and Lorin as listed above. The composer, Beyle Shaechter-Gottesman also sings her ballad to September 11th. With all the insight and weight of the Yiddish community’s enormous losses, this song became especially poignant with the simple rendition of this memorial. One remembers that thousands of Americans attempted to express their feelings about this event in song, so it is fitting that a Yiddish song becomes such an effective conveyance to express the grief of New York. Of special note also is the maturity in Peter Rushefsky’s playing. It’s a pleasure to witness the growth of this rising artist in several recent albums. This album insert includes texts in Yiddish, transliteration and English translation. For more information: