Wednesday nights - Rav Benzion's Tanya shiur..........Please continue to daven for the good health of the Rebbe (Yechiel Michel ben Devorah Leah) and Rebbetzin (Feiga bas Sarah).

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Shabbos Zemiros (Part 2): Shalom Aleichem...

And now for the second installment on the Rebbe's Shabbos Zemiros... 

To start the second post: the Rebbe, shlit"a, sings the same Shalom Aleichem that his father, Reb Yaakov Yisroel, zy"a, did. The nigun was/is sung in Bobov, and Reb Yaakov Yisroel must have learned it from his time by his father-in-law, Rebbe Bentzion, the Kedushas Tzion of Bobov.

Reb Leibele, zy"a, on the other hand, sang a different nusach. I don't know where the nigun came from, but it is very interesting to note something that recently was brought to my attention. There was a certain d'veikusdiggeh nigun which the Divrei Chaim praised highly and enjoyed very much. The nigun was brought from Ukraine to Sanz by Reb Motele on one trips to his illustrious father-in-law. Apparently, this nigun was very popular among the sons of the Divrei Chaim as well, and Reb Shulem Leizer'l of Ratzfert, who was also a son-in-law to Reb Motele, would sing it for Shalom Aleichem. This is just a theory and is not in any way conclusive, but maybe the nigun that Reb Motele brought to Sanz and that his son-in-law sang for Shalom Aleichem is the same nigun that Reb Leibele sang also for Shalom Aleichem.

Reb Sheya, shlit"a, the Rebbe's brother, who spent many Shabbosim with Reb Leibele in Chicago, remembers the nigun that Reb Leibele used to use. He said that it was a nusach more than an actual melody, and Reb Leibele would use the same tune for the whole Ribon Kol Olamim (the prayer that we recite between Shalom Aleichem and Eishes Chayil) and Eishes Chayil.

As you heard on the recording, there are three distinct changes in Rebbe's nusach of Shalom Aleichem:

1. In every stanza, the words are "malachei hashalom, malachei hashareis, malachei elyon" etc. That is to say that "hashalom" comes before "hashareis".

2. In the third stanza, the words are "Barchuni l'chaim tovim u'leshalom, malachei halashalom" etc.

3. In the last stanza, the Rebbe says "B'tzeischem" as opposed to the more common "Tzeischem".

The tune that the Rebbe uses for Ribon Kol Olamim also has its roots in Bobov, however the exact manner in which the Rebbe sings it differs in a number of places from the way it is sung elsewhere.

If you want to get the nusach down, take a siddur and listen to the recording for the changes in the text that the Rebbe says. (Example: the addition of "melech rofei cholim" and "shetaavir anchasi mimeni".)

The Eishes Chayil that the Rebbe sings is one commonly sung in many chassidishe homes. Please, someone should correct me if I'm wrong, but I have heard that the nigun comes from Rebbe Meir of Premishlan. I have no idea if that is true, but either way it goes back more than a few generations.

May this post and the niggunim bring many people an enhanced Shabbos. As always, please add your thoughts and any additional information in the comments.

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1 comment:

Damesek said...

Here is a comment I received via email from one of our readers:

Two ha'aros regarding your post Shabbos Zemiros #2: Shalom Aleichem

A) As you correctly noted, the niggun that the Rebbe sings for Shalom Aleichem is the Shalom Aleichem niggun of the Kedushas Zion. Asides for this niggun (which is also sung in Bobov by Shalosh Seudos for one of the Mizmor L'David's), the Kedushas Zion sung another two niggunim for Shalom Aleichem, one was to the niggun sung by Hakafos for Elokei Haruchos etc (a tune composed by the Ropshitzer Rebbe as a gramen, this niggun is sung in Sanz/Kloisenberg every Friday night for Shalom Aleichem) and the special niggun used for Shabbos Yom Tov/Shabbos Chol Hamoed (this niggun is the nussach which is now sung in Bobov every Friday night). Reb Shlomo of Bobov ZT"L explained that the reason why he chose to use the niggun reserved for Shabbos Yom Tov every Friday night was because after seeing the rebirth of klal yisroel following the destruction of the holocaust every Shabbos is a bechina of Shabbos Yom Tov.

B) The niggun that the Rebbe sings for Eishes Chayil is a Dzikover niggun.

Thank you again for your wonderful work!!

Yehudah Leib (ben Reb Eli) Singer