From the seemingly eternal Forverts: “Di balade funem 11tn september” (“The Ballad of September 11”)

11 Sep

“A song written in the folk tradition of disaster commemoration.” So writes Linda (Leye) Lipsky, when describing Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman’s song, “The Ballad of September 11”, in her encyclopedic biography of the poet for the Jewish Women’s Archive. In this YouTube video, Yiddish singer Lucette van den Berg performs the song beautifully, accompanied by guitarist Erik Raayman. Read my own take on the song.

Why filmmaker-songwriter Josh Waletzky called his elegy for 9/11 “One World.” In Mikhl Yashinsky’s poignant article about the song, we learn that Waletzky, the producer of acclaimed documentaries like “Image Before My Eyes” and “Partisans of Vilna”, had a very personal link to the Twin Towers: his own father, Sholom Waletzky, worked there until his death from cancer in 1975.

Josh Waletzky composed the song only days after the attacks, and performed it several weeks later as part of a benefit to raise money for the victims’ families, although doing so made him uneasy. “There was still a strange feeling, in the wake of so many being killed, to now be playing music,” Waletzky said. Read the story ➤

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