John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton
jheaton

  • Music:

Advent 2008: Happy Hanukkah

Yesterday was not just the winter solstice, but also the first night of Hanukkah, a minor Jewish festival elevated to prominence by its proximity on the calendar to Christmas. Most of what I know about Hanukkah I learned from the All-of-a-Kind Family books by Sidney Taylor and the Friends episode "The One with the Holiday Armadillo," but as I understand it, the festival commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem following the Maccabean Revolt of the 2nd century BC. Apparently there was only enough consecrated olive oil to fuel the eternal flame in the Temple for one day, but miraculously it lasted eight days, which was the time needed to press and consecrate fresh oil. I think Superman was involved somehow too.

So here are three Hanukkah songs for your listening enjoyment. The first is a spirited interpretation of a traditional Hanukkah song, "I Have a Little Dreidel," from the fun 2004 holiday album Barenaked for the Holidays by (who else?) the Barenaked Ladies. Next up, "Light One Candle" by Peter, Paul, and Mary. I actually just heard this song for the first time a couple days ago, but it's fantastic. I'm biased, because I love Peter, Paul, and Mary, and this song features them at their Peter, Paul, and Maryest. The chorus (the New York Choral Society, apparently) is a nice touch too, though again I'm a sucker for songs that feature choral singing. Lastly, we have an odd little number by the United States Navy Band and the Sea Chanters Chorus called "Eight Days of Hanukkah." It's incredibly strange, and the phrase that comes to mind when I hear it is, "well, they meant well..." Give it a listen, you'll see what I mean.

Barenaked Ladies - I Have a Little Dreidel (MP3, 1.2MB)
Peter, Paul, and Mary - Light One Candle (MP3, 3.7MB)
US Navy Band - Eight Days of Hanukkah (MP3, 3.3MB)

Previous Advent posts:

2003: Christmas Trees
2004: Her First Christmas Tree. And Lightning in Her Hands!
2005: The Season's Best Wishes
2006: A Christmas Poem
2007: Pen Box with Scenes from Life of Bahram Gur and the Madonna and Child

Previous Hanukkah posts:

2004: Hanukkah Menorah
2005: Happy Chanukah!
2006: Rock of Ages
2007: Hanukkah Menorah
 
Tags: advent: 2008, holidays: hanukkah, music
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