Rare track: Leonard Cohen sings in heimische Yiddish

Rare track: Leonard Cohen sings in heimische Yiddish

Daily Comfort Zone

norman lebrecht

April 22, 2022

In a Vienna arena concert in 1976, Cohen decided to sing in Yiddish, a language almost obliterated by Hitler’s Holocaust.

The song, Und As Der Rebbe Zingt, is a comic ditty on the sycophancy of Chassidic followers, always imitating the Rebbe.

The Viennese seemed to like it.




  • Bloom says:

    “Did you confuse the Messiah in a mirror
    And rest because he had finally come?
    Let me cry help beside you, Teacher
    I have entered under this dark roof
    As fearlessly as an honoured son
    Enters his father’s house.”

  • France says:

    זייער גוט

  • Helene Kamioner says:

    Yiddish is my mother tongue. For me this rendition of der Rebbe Elimelech is about as Yiddish as a pig’s foot.

    For anyone here interested in Yiddish, I suggest this link…

    • Chaim Halberstam says:

      Sure it is an who said a pig’s foot can’t be [in] Yiddish? It obviously can’t be kosher, lol but I think “chazer fees” says it all…

    • Joseph Zitt says:

      “Der Rebbe Elimelech” and “Un Az der Rebbe Tanzt” are different, completely unrelated songs, other than having the word “Rebbe” in the title amd vaguely similar melodic contours. As a reminder of how “Der Rebbe Elimelech” sounds, here’s a rendition: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUrwiuNqp4U

      That’s like saying (l’havdil) that a performance of Handel’s “Messiah” is a poor rendition of “Jesus Christ Superstar.”

  • Sue Sonata Form says:

    Probably one of the most over-rated singers of the last decades.

  • Morgan says:

    Miss him.

  • CYM says:

    Vocally & musically ridiculous.

  • Judith says:

    Thank you and a gute voch!

  • James Tierney says:

    I’m not terribly familiar with him, but I didn’t know Leonard Cohen sang. I thought he was “just” an excellent songwriter whose songs were performed by others. Nice. And thanks for posting. All good…JT