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» Listen
to the CD
A Taste of Romemu.

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the most Jewish city
in the world?

» Debbie Friedman
Jewish American music
comes to Uganda.

» Jewish Music
how it became
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April 2, 2012
The Gospel of Jewish Services

Many synagogues are asking the question: How do we get new members through the door? One New York City congregation is offering an interesting, new incentive to come.

Romemu, a community that “seeks to integrate mind, body, and spirit,” has put together a new CD of five performances by their 15-member house band. The performances are headed by musical director Shir Yaakov Feit, a guitarist, percussionist, and singer who’s also one-half of the gospel/hip-hop group Darshan.

The pieces have been sculpted carefully, remaking some traditional songs like “Menuha Vesimha” and “Ein Od Milvado,” with tunes by Debbie Friedman and Shlomo Carlebach, and giving them new arrangements and new energy. The many talented musicians involved raise this CD from the ranks of being an above-average synagoguerecording, to a bona fide album. And it’s free.

The catch? You have to physically show up to get one–copies are available in the synagogue lobby. A limited number of copies are available through their website, “if you live too far away to attend services,” they note. Or you can just go online and download the songs for free.

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Matthue Roth's newest book is Automatic. He is also the author of three novels and the memoir Yom Kippur a Go-Go, and is an associate editor at His screenplay 1/20 is currently in production as a feature film.

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