New Double CD Celebrating Tzimmes’ 35th Anniversary!

Track Previews

Please enjoy a free preview of the song tracks in this CD

Track 01: Cuando El Rey Nimrod (When King Nimrod)

Track 04: The Road Never Travelled

Track 08: Mashiakh Hazaken (Messiah the Elder)

Track 12: Shalom Aleichem (Peace Be Unto You)


TZIMMES AT 35—An Update from Musical Director Moshe Denburg

It has been 23 years since the last Tzimmes release, KlezMyriad, and I ought to do some explaining. Tzimmes has not been idle, but since around 2006 our work has mainly entailed doing local gigs in various configurations. From 1998 until 2005, we still did some concerts, and some larger scale projects, and even went into the recording studio in 2005-06. Six of the works on this compilation are tracks that we began to record then.

One of the main reasons Tzimmes has not released this material sooner is because I became very involved with establishing an intercultural orchestra in Vancouver. Called the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra (VICO), it was begun in 2001 and turns 20 this year! At the time of my 70th birthday in 2019, having wound down my administrative commitments to the VICO, I hatched a plan to get back to the tracks we had laid down, and to add to these other materials old and new. This impetus has led to the creation of the present offering, a two-disc compilation of songs that span everything from the liturgical to the secular. There are pieces that go back to my youth, others to my middle years, and some more recent creations as well. The album entire is called The Road Never Travelled, while most of the sacred songs are on a second disc subtitled Liturgy Lane.

Disc 1: The Road Never Travelled

(HANATIV HANISTAR) הנתיב הנסתר

Our musical trek begins with a Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) song, “Cuando El Rey Nimrod” (When King Nimrod). It’s a piece which is rather well known to aficionados of the Ladino repertoire, but we have given it a new rhythm and a fresh setting. Instead of a 4/4 meter, it has been transformed into a Flamenco-style 6 beat, a rhythm often referred to as Bulerias.

Following this, also in an upbeat mood, is “Ahavat Hadasa - Libi V’Mizrakh” (The Love of Hadasa - My Heart Is in the East), an original adaptation of a Yemenite tune (text by Shalem Shabazi), together with an original setting of several lines from a poem by Judah Halevi. Here the rhythm has also been transformed, from a 4/4 to a 7/8. These verses are expressions of a yearning love for the land of Israel, our national home, and were written in the 17th (Shabazi) and the 12th (Halevi) centuries.

Disc 2: Liturgy Lane

(SIMTAT HAPULKHAN) סמטת הפולחן

The second disc is a compilation of sacred song, some remixed older pieces and some more recent or never before recorded. We begin with a canon that I wrote when I was 17 years old, while studying music at Yeshiva University in New York. “Hashmi-ini” (Let Me Hear Your Voice) is a setting of a verse from the Song of Songs, and is delivered by four mezzos, four baritones, four violins, four cellos, guitar and double bass.

“L’Hadlik Ner Shel Shabbat” (Lighting the Sabbath Candles) was commissioned by my lifelong partner and sweetheart, Naomi Arney. She asked me for a tune for lighting the Sabbath candles that wasn’t the one we all sing on Hanukah. The melody I came up with is featured here, and can also be utilized for all holidays, by substituting the words shel shabbat (for the Sabbath) with shel yom tov (for the Holiday) or shel yom hazikaron (for the Day of Remembrance, Rosh Hashana) and so on.

Notes and Lyrics

We would like to offer the notes and lyrics used in the CD free for everyone. Please enjoy

Notes & Lyrics.pdf