Jewish Traditions for Classical and Fingerstyle Guitar: Traditional Jewish Melodies Arranged for Guitar– Solos and Duets

By Ellen S. Whitaker

Durham, NC: Press for Peace Music Publications, 2008.
Includes bibliographical references
ISBN:  978-0-615-24880-6

Ellen S. Whitaker, a guitar teacher in North Carolina, has created an excellent book of guitar arrangements of Jewish favorite melodies. The book is intended for intermediate to advanced guitar players, with a few easier pieces. It includes a key to the guitar notation used in the work, the texts to the songs in transliteration, occasionally in Hebrew text, with English and an annotation about the meaning of the song along with performance notes about each piece. The guitar music, both solos and duets are presented in a separate section, which is an excellent arrangement of the book for learning and performance. The end of the collection includes an appendix explaining the Jewish modes, a second appendix linking each piece with the mode used, a glossary of each of the musical terms, a bibliography and discography. The thoroughness of this work is to be admired. A student new to Jewish music would gain an enormous amount of insight, and those who are familiar with the songs already will have a set of well done arrangements with suggested performance practice. JMWC recommends this book not only to individuals, but to teachers, schools and colleges for purchase. For more information and to preview some of the arrangements, go to: To learn more about Ellen Whitaker, view her website at:
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