Now you can revisit the glory days of the Lower East Side and hear the songs as they were actually sung.
The recordings in this special JSA collection were produced on 78 rpm recordings between 1901 and 1922, at the height of Yiddish Theater’s popularity.
Four stars of Yiddish Musical Comedy are highlighted: Gus Goldstein, Clara Gold, Anna Hoffman and Jacob Jacobs.
Gus Goldstein, an American Yiddish actor of the early 20th century made many recordings for Columbia Records. This JSA collection features 37 of his solo songs.
He also made recordings with Clara Gold that focused on immigrant issues and Yiddish humor, and featuring Litvak, Galitzianer and Italian dialects. Clara Gold played character roles in the Yiddish Theater and was known for her comedic performances. She partnered with Gus Goldstein from 1916 to 1926. Forty-four of the songs they recorded together are in this collection.
Jacob Jacobs was known for adding timely dialogue to his Yiddish comedy acts and translating English songs into Yiddish. This collection includes 12 of his songs recorded between 1909 and 1922. An interesting historical note is that in 1932 he collaborated with composer Sholom Secunda on a Yiddish musical comedy, “I Would If I Could.” Although the show was not a great success it did produce a song that would later become the #1 hit, Bei Mir Bist du Shon.
If you understand Yiddish, remember Yiddish Theater, or just want a nostalgic journey, you won’t be disappointed. Click here to listen to any of the 14 digitized albums in the collection.