Mishkan Chicago Davening Team | A Taste of Mishkan: Music for an Inspired Year

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Spiritual: Praise & Worship Holiday: World Moods: Type: Vocal
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A Taste of Mishkan: Music for an Inspired Year

by Mishkan Chicago Davening Team

Experience the music of inspired, down-to-earth Judaism, created by the Davening Team at Mishkan Chicago, to help you connect heaven to earth wherever you are on your journey.
Genre: Spiritual: Praise & Worship
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Joey's Niggun
3:37 $1.29
2. Ashrei
4:51 $1.29
3. Shiru L'adonai
3:41 $1.29
4. L'cha Dodi to Avniel's Niggun
4:07 $1.29
5. Kalman's Niggun
4:13 $1.29
6. Shalom Aleikhem
2:38 $1.29
7. Sanctuary
3:04 $1.29
8. Bina's Niggun
3:52 $1.29
9. Min Hametzar
6:03 $1.29
10. By the Waters of Babylon / Babylon
5:31 $1.29
11. Chicago
3:34 $1.29
12. Adon Haselichot
3:16 $1.29
13. B'sefer Chayim
3:11 $1.29
14. Suri Goali Yah
2:12 $1.29
15. Ein Od
2:41 $1.29
16. Utzu Eitza
3:08 $1.29
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Prayer is song, and song can be prayer. “The only language that seems to be compatible with the wonder and mystery of being is the language of music.” Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

But let’s be honest: you don’t need some fancy rabbi to tell you that music matters when we show up for prayer. You know it when you feel it, when you feel that unmistakable sense of being lifted and propelled higher on the wings of a soaring niggun– words, voices and harmonies blending together to create a moment that has no other word to describe it other than magical. Spiritual. Holy. A moment that transcends our differing beliefs and questions, and simply asserts the presence of beauty and connection.

The Mishkan in the Torah connected earth to the heavens, creating sacred space wherever the Israelites were on their journey through the desert. We want to help you connect earth and heavens in your everyday life, too, just by hitting play on the train or bus, in your car, in your office, putting your kids or yourself to sleep at night. For many of us, the siddur/prayerbook gives us words to speak in services, but the music is the vehicle that helps us carry those prayers outside of the walls of the shul– literally and spiritually. We invite you experience inspired, down-to-earth Judaism, wherever you are in the world, and wherever you are on your journey.

Rabbi Lizzi Heydemann

The Mishkan Davening Team
Stacy Brown, vocals • Abby Citrin, vocals • David Frankel, vocals • Grace Gleason, vocals • Yoni Sarason, vocals and drums • Aleya Schwartz, vocals • Celia Strauss, vocals • Kalman Strauss, vocals and fiddle • Jill Zenoff, vocals •
Rabbi Lizzi Heydemann, vocals and guitar

THANK YOU to the Harvey L. Miller Foundation for supporting this endeavor – both our work in Chicago, and our desire to share this approach to davening and Jewish learning far beyond our community. And of course, thank you to the Mishkan Chicago community, without whom none of this would be possible (and even if it were, it certainly wouldn’t sound as good).
Check out www.mishkanchicago.org/tasteofmishkan for complete lyrics in Hebrew, transliteration, translation and additional commentary.

Joey’s Niggun
Tune: Joey Weisenberg + singing communities
Used by permission of Joey Weisenberg
This tune emerged spontaneously at the 2014 Singing Communities Intensive at Mechon Hadar. We find it grounding and elevating, a great way to enter kabbalat shabbat/Friday night services or shaharit/morning davening.

Ashrei • Joy
Tune: Rabbi Shefa Gold • Words: Psalm 84, featuring Aleya Schwartz, Grace Gleason, Celia Strauss, Kalman Strauss, and Jill Zenoff
Used by Permission of Rabbi Shefa Gold, www.rabbishefagold.com
Joyful are those who sit in Your house. They will keep on praising You! - Psalm 84,
Intellectually we know that God’s house isn’t just a church, mosque, or synagogue– it’s everywhere– but sometimes it takes stopping and reminding ourselves in the middle of the day with a song, a prayer, like this.

Shiru L’Adonai • Sing To G!d
Tune: Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach • Words: Psalm 96
This psalm, sung on Friday nights to this particular tune, has become so ingrained in the collective consciousness of our generation of daveners, it’s as if the tune itself came from Sinai. But it didn’t. It was written by an inspired rabbi of the last generation, and is a great reminder that the words, Sing a new song to G!d, are not just nice religious poetry: they’re instructions for how to be in the world.

L’cha Dodi to Avniel’s Niggun
Tune: Peter Avniel Saltzman • Words: Shlomo Alkabetz, Kabbalat Shabbat
We could have chosen at least 10 L’cha Dodi tunes that we love for this CD. We went with Avniel’s niggun, which we originally learned to the zemer/song Yah Ribon Olam, because it has both the qualities of lightness and rhythm, and the ability to be done fast and ecstatic, and slow and meditative– both of which are crucial qualities in creating prayer space.

Kalman’s Niggun • Barekhu
Tune: Kalman Strauss • Words from Shaharit service
Used by permission of Kalman Strauss
Kalman Strauss, a budding composer and rockstar fiddle player, composed this niggun for the occasion of his bar mitzvah. Originally set to the text in Shabbat morning liturgy right after the Barekhu (haEl ha’Pote’ah b’chol yom/to the One who opens the gates of the eastern sky every day).

Shalom Aleikhem • Welcome, Angels
Tune: David Frankel • Words: Traditional
Used by permission of David Frankel
A song sung on Friday nights to welcome in Shabbat around the dinner table. David, channeling his inner ancestral Mizrahi composer, wrote this tune.

Sanctuary • V’asu li Mikdash
Tune: Pastor Michael Dixon • Words from the Torah, featuring Stacy Brown
Used by Permission of Michael Dixon/TuneCore, Inc.
Inspired by the Torah’s words: “Prepare for Me a sanctuary, and I will dwell within you” (Exodus 25:8) this song asks us to prepare OURSELVES to be holy vessels for G!d’s presence– in essence, to make ourselves into Mishkans.

Bina’s Niggun
Tune: Joey Weisenberg, featuring Kalman Strauss

Min HaMetzar • From the Depths
Tune: KD Kagel; adapted by a•zam•ra • Words: Psalm 118:5, often used for Hallel
Used by Permission of Mustallah Music/BMI
This song gives voice to the struggle to reach beyond places of sadness, constriction and depression out into the great Mystery – and to find great spaciousness and possibility there.

By the Waters of Babylon/Babylon
Tunes: Don McLean, Brent Dowe, Trevor McNaughton • Psalm 137:1, featuring Jill Zenoff
Used by Permission of Don McLean/UMG and Used by Permission of Brent Dowe, Trevor McNaughton/Music Sales Corporation
Particularly resonant around Tisha B’Av, the holiday remembering the destruction of the Temple and the ongoing suffering of our people and our planet, these words recall Jews dreaming about Zion, and their desire to return home, tears in their eyes. We pray not only for a literal restoration, but also for what Jerusalem symbolizes: a city that has always been fraught, at peace. A dream that we’ve nurtured for years, being realized.

Tune and Words: Sufjan Stevens, featuring Abby Citrin
Used by Permission of New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
“I made a lot of mistakes.” With these words, we’re really capable of moving into High Holiday territory, of being transformed by the spiritual technology of verbal confession and prayer at the heart of Yom Kippur. Try it sometime. Say it with us: “I made a lot of mistakes.” You might just become a new person.

Adon HaSelichot
Tune: Traditional Mizrahi • Words: Yom Kippur slichot liturgy, featuring Grace Gleason, David Frankel, and Kalman Strauss
This acrostic (a poem where every stanza starts with the next letter in the alphabet) gives God lots of different names to describe the different metaphors that connect with the spirit of the Yamim Nora’im, first and foremost Master of Forgiveness.

B’sefer Chayim • In the Book of Life
Tune: Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach • Words: High Holiday liturgy, featuring David Frankel
Recognizing that we craft our destinies in partnership with forces beyond our control, we put ourselves in the capable hands of G!d (or the Universe, or the Great Spirit, or whatever you want to call Her) and offer our deepest prayers: that we may written in the books of life, blessing, peace, of making a good living, of happiness and of love.

Suri Goali Yah
Tune: Hillel Tigay, adapted from Ladino • Words: Traditional
Used by Permission of Be Why/BMI
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight my Rock (tzuri) and my Redeemer (goali), God (Yah).

Ein Od • Aleinu
Tune: Peter Avniel Saltzman • Words: liturgy

Utzu Eitza
Tune: Hillel Tigay • Words: Isaiah 8:10
Used by Permission of Be Why/BMI
While Jews of course have a healthy measure of self-critique built into our DNA, we also need words that remind us not to let the bastards get us down when we receive the inevitable ire and critique of those around us. This song is often associated with Purim, because the words say “Go ahead: scheme your schemes and devise your plans– they’ll come to nothing because G!d is with us.” It’s less about feeling triumphalist and more about an orientation to the world that affirms us on the path we walk– not just to defy outer enemies or critics, but to hold our own heads high.

Mishkan Chicago is an independent spiritual community in Chicago on a mission to engage, educate, empower and inspire the next generation through dynamic experiences of Jewish prayer, learning, social activism and community building. We believe that Judaism is a powerful vehicle for transformation of self and world, bringing more light, more healing, more justice and more joy to the world.




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