Yiddish Curiosities: a library of wonderful but forgotten Yiddish songs from the late 1920s and after (includes Polish Jewish Cabaret). Have a listen!

1. Link to list of posts on this site
2. Link to songs for sale
3. Click here for our music videos of Yiddish songs with English subtitles (mainly post-1925)
4. List of the still lost songs. Do you know any of them?
5. Warszawa zumerkurs song links


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Der kashtenboym (The Chestnut Tree) by Lola Folman

We managed to squeak this song onto the cd at the last minute (click at right to have a listen).

Lola Folman, who composed the song, was part of kleynkunst programs; she presented what were called "folk songs" but she and her husband Yitskhok Perlov often wrote them. He was the lyricist for this song. I have the sheet music if you want it, contact me at jane@mappamundi.com

Here's a live concert video:

Here's my translation from the Yiddish:

A mama had a little daughter
With beautiful blond hair.
She sings and sews a little dress and dreams.
The apple falls not far from the tree.

The years go by, life goes its way,
The daughter is grown, pretty and slim.
The mother, 42 years old, is still young and fit.
The daughter is 16 and has already been successful.

Young men hang around outside her house,
singing pretty little songs and calling her to come out:
"Come out my dear, the chestnut tree is blooming,
I'm yours, you're mine, I dream of noone else."

The mama thinks they mean her,
She runs to the mirror like a rabbit.
The daughter blushes and hangs her head (actually, her nose).
"Children must go go sleep, there are dogs outside."
"Mom, I'm not sleepy - and I'm not a child any longer."

The mom goes in her bedroom and lies right down,
Listening to the chestnut tree rapping on the window and saying:
"Once I bloomed for you when you were young,
Now I bloom for your daughter because she's young and pretty."

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