This past winter, on one bleak day, I happened to notice an old cassette tape on top of a small pile of cassettes on the floor next to my bookshelf in my study. Even from my desk chair across the small room, I noticed the title, “Nigunim and Folk Songs, Ben-Zion Gold,” and I recognized his handwriting. It was as if it appeared out of nowhere because I do not remember putting it there. I did not know I had it and did not remember ever having it or listening to it.
I slipped it into my cassette player to listen to what was on it. There were 13 different tracks, and the sound was clear. The recordings seem to have been made not long after the evening in November 1976 when I first recorded the first 11 songs he remembered from his childhood. The cassette has four additional nigunim, two lively Yiddish songs, and re-recordings of some of the songs recorded previously, including the words he had forgotten when I first recorded him. None of the new nigunim is familiar to me. Listen to a selection from these newly discovered songs:
— Jane Myers