Educational Resources

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Hanukkah Music

Rachel Buchman, Shine Little Candles: Chanukah Songs for Children. Rounder, 2000.
Shine Little Candles is a great album because it teaches Hanukkah. Rachel Buchman explains Hanukkah traditions, sings with children, and characters like “candle” and “gelt” (Hanukkah coins) tell the Hanukkah story. The compilation of songs in English, Hebrew, Ladino, and Yiddish as well as the album’s educational aspect make Shine Little Candles a treat for whole family.

Erran Baron Cohen, Songs in the Key of Hanukkah. Watertower Music, 2008.
This album by Erran Baron Cohen (yes, Sascha Baron Cohen’s brother) weaves together traditions of klezmer, reggae, electronica, hip hop, tango and pop. Its inventiveness and international flair -- songs are sung in English, Hebrew, and Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) -- make celebrating Hanukkah fun and accessible for the whole family.

Alan Eder and Friends, Reggae Chanukah. Mr. E. Records, 1999
If you are searching for holiday music that thinks outside the box, Reggae Chanukah will not disappoint. With contributions by over two dozen artists, the album incorporates musical traditions from the Caribbean, Middle East, and West Africa. The genre-bending world music album celebrates the festivity of Hanukkah and will give your family new perspective on how to commemorate an incredible event of Jewish survival.

Kenny Ellis, Hanukkah Swings. Favored Nations, 2005.
Kenny Ellis’ Hanukkah Swings is a delightful album of traditional and original music sung in the style of swing and big-band. A cantor at Los Angeles’ Temple Beth Haverim, Ellis sings catchy tunes in Hebrew and English, all of which are fun for singing, dancing, and enjoying the Hanukkah spirit.

Jewish Wedding Band, A Child’s Hanukkah. Music Little People, 1998.
A Child’s Hanukkah incorporates both original and traditional tunes with klezmer-infused music to bring joy to each melody. With dialogue between the songs to give brief holiday stories, as well as the accompaniment of children’s voices, A Child’s Hanukkah feels playful and very accessible.

Gail Anthony Greenberg, Woody Guthrie’s Happy Joyous Hanukkah. Jewish Music Group, 2006.
With music written by Woody Guthrie and sung by the Klezmatics (with a few Klezmatics originals thrown in), Woody Guthrie’s Happy Joyous Hanukkah explores Jewish Americana and its klezmer sound. Kids and adults will replay this album again and again.