Ethel Raim

Today’s episode features singer, music researcher, and arts advocate Ethel Raim. Actually, it’s quite hard to encapsulate Ethel’s long and continuing career. She’s the emeritus artistic director of the Center For Traditional Music and Dance, is a noted teacher of Yiddish, Balkan, and other styles of folk singing, and founded the important folk group The Pennywhistlers. Working with Zev Feldman and Andy Statman to present and fund concerts by Dave Tarras in the 70s, Ethel had a big hand in bringing klezmer music out of its “dry period.” It was a big treat with me to get a chance to talk to Ethel about her life and career, and I’m so happy to be able to share it all with you.

Musical Selections:

– Oy vey mamen ikh shpil a libe – Traditional Yiddish song from the repertoire of Ita Taub – performed by Ethel Raim, recorded live at the 2013 Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

Performed by Urban Women Village Song (Ethel Raim, Sonya Cohen & Catherine Foster) live at a 1994 concert at New York’s Dance Theatre Workshop:

– Nye spasobnaya bila vryemichka – Russian song from the repertoire of the Fyodorov sisters – with guest artist Ellen Shumsky.
– Tsar Murat Mara dumashe – Traditional Bulgarian song.
– Chuli se sa male – Traditional Macedonian song.

– Mayn Rue Plats – Text by Moris Rosenfeld – performed by The Pennywhistlers on our 1968 Nonesuch recording.

Go here for a long bio of Ethel’s many, many accomplishments.