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The Holy Hunchback | English Ver. | Aaron Razel

The Holy Hunchback | English Ver. | Aaron Razel

Some years ago I was walking down a street in Tel Aviv. I saw an old man, he was sweeping the streets. His eyes were filled with grace, his body was all broken, a special light was shining from his face. I approached him and said: “Shalom Aleichem”. He replied as in the shtet’l: “Aleichem Shulem!” I continued in Yiddish: “Mein zisseh Yid”, sweet brother Jew, “would you tell me where are you from?”

When he said: “I’m from Piaseczno”, it was like a bomb went off inside me: never had I met a survivor from that town.
“As a child, did you ever see Rebbe Klonimus Kalman?” I asked. “Of course”, he said, “one doesn’t forget his childhood Rebbe.
When I was 11 I got to Auschwitz. They thought I was 17 and sent me to the labor camps. Now I’ve got no one. I am alone in this world.” He went on sweeping the streets.

“Kinderlach, tayereh zisseh kinderlach.
Promise me you will remember this forever:
The greatest thing in the whole wide world is to do someone else a favor.”

I told him: “My friend, I heard so much of Rebbe Kalman, can you tell me some Torah wisdom you learned from him?”
He looked at me and said: “Do you really think after Auschwitz, there is something that we still can remember? And how can I ever describe how beautifully we welcomed the Shabbat. We danced and danced all the children around the Rebbe.
Oh yes, there is one thing I do remember he used to tell us again and again.
I will remember this for the rest of my life! He said:”

“Kinderlach, tayereh zisseh kinderlach.
Promise me you will remember this forever:
The greatest thing in the whole wide world is to do someone else a favor.”

“In the camps, when I realized my whole family was gone in flames, it was a dark night, I thought to put my life to an end.
Then I heard the Rebbe’s voice echoing in my ears: ‘Remember, do a favor for someone else’.
Do you know how many favors you can do at night in Auschwitz? Broken people all around. Then more arrive. I sat all night listening, giving them empathy and love. I guess that’s how I survived.”

“Kinderlach, children oh sweet precious kinderlach.
Promise me you will remember this forever:
The greatest thing in the whole wide world is to do someone else a favor.”

“Even to this day, sometimes I feel my life has no purpose, I go into the sea, his voice comes in my ears:
“Kinderlach, remember the greatest thing in the world!
You know how much good the world needs today!”

Written and composed by Aaron Razel
Illustrations by Josh Baum
Based on a true story as told by Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

Original story by: Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach
Lyrics written & adapted by: Aaron Razel
Music composed by: Aaron Razel

Musical production by: Eyal Mazig
Musical arrangement by: Eyal Mazig & Aaron Razel
String arrangement by: Aaron Razel
Piano: Aaron Razel
Bass & computing: Eyal Mazig

Violin: Chen Shenhar
Violin: Avner Kalmer
Viola: Galia Chai
Cello: Yoad Nir
French horn: Sharon Polak
Guitars: Avi Singolda
Sound technician: Assaf Shachar
Recorded in the studio of Eyal Mazig 2019
Mixing & mastering: Gili Telman

Original drawings: Yehoshua (Josh) Baum 055-9209331
Editing & animation: Michal Lavi
Public relations: Kobi Sela
Exclusive management & representation: Arieh Hantz 052-3928885
Digital distribution: Kamea – Kvutzat Musica Atzmait



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