Category: Liturgy / Siddur

‘God is in the detail’: a composer’s perspective on crafting modern Jewish sacred music

Summary of sections: Prayer, words and music – the role of sacred music ‘Reaching out without dumbing down’ Music as theology; music as midrash ‘Prayer: the lost art’ Making music holy – kodesh ‘God is in the detail’ – 25

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Kabbalat Shabbat music

Here are some my musical settings that can be used for Kabbalat Shabbat. First, music for prayers and texts already in the siddur: Adon Olam No.1 – (recording coming soon) The refrain evokes the solemnity and grandeur of the Divine, while the

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Kol B’Ramah, Kol D’mei

Music and audio © Alexander Massey 11 April 2018 Jer. 31:15; Gen. 4:10; Jerusalem Talmud, Sanhedrin 4:1 (22a) On Yom HaShoah v’HaGevurah, we commemorate both the victims of the Holocaust, and those who heroically resisted. This piece was written to

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Omer Day 7 – Malchut of Chesed

Composition and audio © Alexander Massey 20 May 2014 Many years ago, someone commented to me that I didn’t always say ‘thank you’ when it might have been appropriate. I was shocked, and embarrassed. I was convinced I was grateful.

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Omer Day 1 – Chesed of Chesed

Music and recording © Alexander Massey 11 March 2015 The sheet music is available for purchase as part of ‘Five Sacred Chants’. Further commentary about this text can be found in two other of my articles: Elohai N’shamah: its music

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Outline for Shabbat morning davenen

Introduction This is my own personal take on the sequence of the Shabbat morning service. I have drawn from several siddurim (prayerbooks), from Orthodox, through Jewish Renewal to UK Reform and Liberal. I have included most of the big ‘set

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Adon Olam No.2

Composition and audio © Alexander Massey 10 Feb 2015 For commentary about the text and symbolism of Adon Olam, click here.  

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Kaddish

Composition and audio © Alexander Massey 5 Dec 2015 Much could be (and has been) written about the Kaddish (to which I have put links below). Although one version is referred to as mourner’s kaddish, it is part of our

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Modeh Ani

Composition and audio © Alexander Massey 20 May 2014 The Modeh ani prayer is often used as an alternative to the Elohai n’shamah prayer as the first words that are spoken on waking in the morning. ‘Thanks’ is the first thought,

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V’taheir Libeinu

Composition and audio © Alexander Massey 13 August 2015 Buy V’taheir libeinu – sheet music – voice and guitar – includes full instructions for group circle dance – £3.25 The sheet music for this is available for purchase as part of ‘Five

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