Ethan Crenson @ 78rpm : Hazzanut

Artist and curator Ethan Crenson shares amazing platters from his expansive 78rpm collection. Brooklyn blocks echo with these mournful melodies that cry out from open windows. Presenting seven records by Jewish cantors (hazzanim) and one by an actor-singer from the 1920's Yiddish theater.

"One of the earliest recordings here is a memorial to the victims of the Titanic disaster recorded in 1913. Four of the records, all by Mordechai Hershman, are from the years between the World Wars, an era considered the "golden age" of cantorial singing. The songs are powerful, plaintive, soulful, and to me, very mysterious." - E.C.

[victor 68630] {1923}
Mordechai Hershman - Ato Yazarto - Teil 1 - (Thou hast created thy World pt.1)
Mordechai Hershman - Ato Yazarto - Teil 2 - (Thou hast created thy World pt.2)

[victor 68639] {1923}
Mordechai Hershman - Sand und Sterne (Sand and Stars)
Mordechai Hershman - Mai-do-mashma-lon (Monologue of a Talmudical Student)

[victor 68598] {1922}
Mordechai Hershman - In Cheder'l (In the Hebrew Classroom)
Mordechai Hershman - A Dudele

[victor 68614] {1923}
Mordechai Hershman - Ein Kemechal (There is no one but God)
Mordechai Hershman - Ahavat Rahya:Arabische Lied/Di Frau's Liebe (Ahavat Rahya:Arabian Song/The Wife's Love)

[unknown label, 1952}
Noah Nachbush - Yochenen Hasander
Noah Nachbush - Chassidic Airs

[menorah records E-47] {date unknown}
Cantor Samuel Kligfeld - Shofetim (pt 1)
Cantor Samuel Kligfeld - Shofetim (pt 2)

[polyphon 0211536] {1909}
Oberkantor Zavel Kwartin - Uwinu Malkeinu
Oberkantor Zavel Kwartin - Adom Jesodo Meofor

[victor 35312] {1913}
Josef "Yossele" Rosenblatt - Kol Nidre
Josef "Yossele" Rosenblatt - El Mole Rachmin (für Titanik)


Mordechai Hershman (1888–1940) around was a hazzan in Vilna. After serving in World War I, he emigrated to Brooklyn and took the position of hazzan at Temple Beth El.

Noah Nachbush (1885-1970) was an actor of the influential Vilna Group. He emigrated to the US in 1923 where he became a singer-actor in the Yiddish theater.

Samuel Kligfeld was cantor for the Genesis Hebrew Center in Crestwood, New York. He performed on the radio and television in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Zavel Kwartin
(1874-1952) was born in Russia. He became Obercantor of the Queen Elizabet Temple in Vienna in 1903. Invited to perform in the US in 1914, his tour was postponed by the outbreak of World War I. He completed the tour in 1920 and decided to stay in the US permanently as hazzan of the Temple Emanuel in Borough Park, Brooklyn. Upon his death he was buried in Israel in 1952.

Josef "Yossele" Rosenblatt (1882-1933), a child prodigy from a long line of cantors, was born in Ukraine. His first position was in Hungary at the age of 18 . Later, he served as cantor in Hamburg, followed by a position in Harlem, New York's First Hungarian Congregation Ohab Zedek. He had a singing role in the film the 1923 film 'The Jazz Singer'.