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


Saturday, April 27, 2013

Mayn meydele (My Girl) - Herman Fenigstein - wonderful Yiddish tango love song

UPDATE: Adding a video of Herman Fenigstein singing his own song, back in the day. I added subtitles in English.

Or you can click the album cover to hear and/or buy the track from our In Odess cd, with Randy Kloko singing baritone and Ken Bloom playing guitar and me filling in the rest.

According to Tomasz Lerski, Fenigstein recorded this as Mejn Mejdele with Dawid Bejgelman orchestra (Syrena Grand Record 5420). The Medem Bibliotheque in Paris was kind enough to help me find the recording. This is one of the few instances where I have the actual recording that Zhelonek transcribed for his collection!

Herman Fenigstein (right) is one of the recording artists featured most prominently in the Zhelonek booklets but he's virtually unknown today.

Note that the rhythm of this Polish tango is more like a "slow fox" (foxtrot) than what we'd associate with tangos today.

My loose translation of the Yiddish:

Night and day I thought of you, my pretty little girl.
I waited a long time, I yearned,
Your image painted in my fantasy murmured quietly, where are you?
Because I really love you, endlessly
I flew over storms in the oceans with you, because I love you so.

Oy, my little maiden, a world of charm lives within you
See how your beloved waits here!
My heart is eager for your love.
Oh my blossom, my rose, come to me,
See how my heart is eager
My maiden hasn't deceived me.

I never used to be true to women.
This is what my life brought me to.
I'd dodge you, worry and suffering,
When I ran away full of commotion
I had no peace from them,
I didn't believe them for a minute.
There was just one bloom for me, from heaven,
That God himself sent to me...

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