Puertas

Album Translations & Credits

 

 

 

1. Los Bilbilicos                                             Love Blooms

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Arrangement: Sarah Aroeste, Yoel Ben-Simhon, Alan Cohen

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Oud, back-up vocals: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums, darbuka, riqq: Liron Peled

 

 

Los bilbilicos cantan                                        The nightingales sing

Con sospiros de amor;                                                With sighs of love;

Mi neshama y mi ventura                                My soul and my fate

Estan en tu poder.                                            Are in your power.

 

La rosa enflorese                                             The rose blooms

En el mes de mai;                                            In the month of May;

Mi neshama s’escurese                                   My soul suffers

Sufriendo del amor.                                         From love’s pain.

 

Mas presto ven palomba,                                Come more quickly, dove,

Mas presto ven con mi;                                   More quickly come with me;

Mas presto ven querida,                                  More quickly come, beloved,

Corre y salvame.                                             Run and save me.

 

 

 

2. Avre Tu Puerta                                         Open Your Door

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Additional composition and arrangement: Yoel Ben-Simhon

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Oud, keyboard, back-up vocals: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Cello: Ben Kalb; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums, darbuka, riqq: Liron Peled; Violin: Skye Steele 

 

 

Avre tu puerta cerrada;                                    Open your door;

Que en tu balcon luz no hay.                           On your balcony, there is no light.

El amor a ti te vela;                                          My love will fly up to you;

Partemos mi flor, partemos de aqui.                Come with me my flower, come away with me.

 

Yo demandi de la tu hermozura,                      I asked about your beauty,

Como te la dio el dio.                                      The beauty god gave you.

La hermozura tuya es pura,                             It is pure,

La merezco solo yo.                                        Only I deserve it.

 

 

3. Me Siento Alegre                                       Yearn For You

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Arrangement: Band

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Classical guitar, keyboard: Yoel Ben-Simhon;

Bendir: Randy Crafton; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Cello: Ben Kalb; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums: Liron Peled; Violin: Skye Steele

 

 

Me siento alegre y muy contente,                    I am so happy and content,

No penso mas en el amor.                               I don’t think of love any more.

Y l’amor que a ti es muy potente,                    My love for you is so strong,

Me da courage, salvame dolor.                        It gives me courage and takes away pain.

 

La tuya gracia y hermozura,                            Your grace and beauty,

Tu lindo cuerpo y tu bivez,                              Your beautiful body and spirit,

A mi me rendes grande ventura,                      You give me great joy,

Deseo verte otra una vez.                                I want to see you again.

 

Por ti, querida, yo me desespero,                    For you, beloved, I yearn,

Por ti sola vo tresalir.                                      For you alone excite me.

Fidelidades de ti espero                                   I hope for your fidelity

Fin el dia que yo vo morir.                              Until the day I die.

 

 

 

4. Una Matica De Ruda                                Young Lovers

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Arrangement: Sarah Aroeste, Yoel Ben-Simhon, Alan Cohen

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Oud: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Bongos: Randy Crafton; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Darbukas, riqq, zils: Liron Peled; G-Clarinet: Harel Shachal

 

 

Una matica de ruda,                                         A sprig of rue,
Una matica de flor.                                          A flowering sprig.
Hija mia mi querida,                                        My dear daughter,
Dime a mi quien te la dio.                                Tell me, who gave it to you.

Me la dio un mancevico                                  A young man gave it to me
Que de mi s’enamoro.                                     Who fell in love with me.

Hija mia mi querida                                         My dear daughter
No t’eches a la perdicion.                                Don't fall into ruin.
Mas vale un mal marido                                  It is better to have a bad husband       
Que un mancevo de amor.                               Than a young lover.                           

Mancevo de amor, la mi madre                       A young lover, mother
La mancana y el buen limon.                           Is like a ripe apple and a sweet lemon.

 

 

 

 

5. Si La Mar Era De Leche                           The Siren

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Arrangement: Sarah Aroeste, Yoel Ben-Simhon

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Acoustic guitar, back-up vocals: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Trumpet: Frank London; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums, riqq: Liron Peled

 


Si la mar era de leche,                          If the sea were made of milk,             
Yo m’haria un pexcador.                                 I would become a fisherman.             
Pexcaria mis dolores,                                      I would fish my sorrows,                   
Con palabricas d’amor.                                   With little words of love.                    

Si la mar era de leche,                                      If the sea were made of milk,             
Yo m’haria vendedor,                                     I would become a peddler,                 
Caminando y preguntando,                             Walking and asking,                           
Donde s’empesa l’amor?                                 Where does love begin?                     


En la mar hay una torre,                                  In the sea there is a tower,      
En la torre una ventana            ,                       In the tower a window,                      
En la ventana una hija                                      By the window, a young lady                        

Que a los marineros llama.                              Who calls out to the sailors.               

Dame la mano, palomba,                                 Give me your hand, dove,
Para suvir a tu nido.                                        To climb up to your nest.
Maldicha que durmes sola,                              It is a curse that you sleep alone,
Vengo a durmir contigo!                                 I am coming to sleep with you!          

 

 

6. Una Pastora Yo Ami                                I loved Once

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Additional composition and arrangement: Yoel Ben-Simhon

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Piano, keyboard, back-up vocals: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Riqq: Randy Crafton; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums, darbuka: Liron Peled

 

 

Una pastora yo ami,                                        I loved a shepherdess,

Una hija hermoza.                                           A beautiful girl.

De mi chiques yo l’adori,                                From my childhood I loved her,

Mas qu’ella no ami.                                        I loved no one else.

 

Un dia que estavamos                                     One day while we were

En la huerta asentados                                     Sitting in the garden

Le dixe yo: “Por ti mi flor,                              I said to her: “For you, my flower

Me muero de amor.”                                       I die of love.”

 

 

En los sus brasos me apreto,                           In her arms she held me,

Con amor me bezo.                                         With love she kissed me.

Me respondio con dulsor:                               She replied with sweetness:

“Sos chico para amor.”                                    “You are too young for love.”

 

M’engrandeci y la buxqui;                              I grew up and I searched for her;

Otro tomo y la pedri.                                       She had taken another and I had lost her.

Ella se olvido de mi                                         She forgot of me

Ma siempre yo la ami.                                     But I always loved her.

 

 

 

7. Shabat                                                        Sabbath

 

Music: Judy Frankel; Lyrics: Rita Gabbai-Simantov; Additional composition and arrangement: Yoel Ben-Simhon

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Classical guitar: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Shakers: Randy Crafton; Electric guitar, classical guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Flamenco guitar: Dan Nadel; Drums, darbuka, riqq: Liron Peled

 

 

Me acodro de mi nona,                                    I remember my grandmother,

Cada viernes por la tadre,                                How every Friday afternoon,

Como le havlava siempre                                She would always talk

A su nuera, mi madre.                                     To her daughter-in-law, my mother.

 

“Aide, fija regalada,                                         “Come, precious daughter,

Quitate el devantal.                                          Take off your apron,

Metete vistido limpio,                                      Put on a clean dress,

Que ya llega el Shabat.”                                  For the Sabbath is arriving.”

 

La comida ya esta pronta,                                The food is already,

Y la mesa se metio,                                         The table is all set,

Las candelas acendidas,                                   The candles have been lit,

Tu famia ya entro.                                           Your family is here.

 

 

 

 

 

8. Povereta Muchachika                               Poor Girl

 

Music and lyrics: Traditional; Arrangement: Sarah Aroeste, Yoel Ben-Simhon

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Piano, keyboard, toy piano: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums: Liron Peled

 

 

Povereta muchachika,                                      Poor girl,

De que sufres del amor?                                  Why do you suffer from love?

De que sufres en cadenas,                               Why do you suffer in chains,

En esta escura prizion?                                    In this dark prison?

 

Ven te contare mi storia,                                  Come listen to my story,

Lo que vengo a sufrir.                                     For which I suffer.

Por un mancevico hermozo,                            It is because of a handsome boy,

Que por el me vo morir.                                  That I am dying.

 

Asentada en mi ventana                                   Sitting by the window

Lavrando el bastidor,                                       Doing my sewing,

Haberico me truxeron                                      They brought me the news

Qu’el mi amor se despozo!                             That my love was engaged!

           

En medio de la nochada                                   In the middle of the night

A su espoza engani yo;                                   I surprised his fiancee,;

L’enfinqui cuchillo al lado                               I stabbed her in the side

Al punto cayo, murio.                                     And at once, she was dead.

 

 

 

 

 

 

9. Thessaloniki                                             

 

Music: Inspired by Mongo Santamaria’s “Afro-Blue”; Lyrics: Sarah Aroeste; Arrangement: Sarah Aroeste, Alan Cohen, Band

Vocals: Sarah Aroeste; Oud, bendir, karakeb, palmas, back-up vocals: Yoel Ben-Simhon; Electric guitar: Yaron Eilam; Bass: Emmanuel Mann; Drums, darbuka, riqq: Liron Peled

 

 

Thessaloniki land I know

Monastir I cry you hello

Lift up my voice I call to you

Come to me now I long for you

 

Thessaloniki blue and gold

Monastir I’m in your hold

Give me your song and cry it true

Come to me now I long for you

 

Thessaloniki, Monastir

Give me your hand and lead me there

Sing me your song and carry me through

Come to me now I long for you

 

 

 

10. Puertas Remix                             Engineer: Tamir Muskat

 

 

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Produced by Sarah Aroeste, Frank London & Yoel Ben-Simhon

Musical Direction by Yoel Ben-Simhon

Recorded & Engineered by Randy Crafton and Sal Mormando;

Mixed by Randy Crafton and Sal Mormando at Kaleidoscope Sound, Union City, NJ

Remix edited at Vibromonk Studios, Brooklyn, NY

Mastered by Scott Hull at Scott Hull Mastering, New York, NY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liner Notes Intro:

 

 

The word “puertas,” or doors, holds special symbolism in Sephardic culture.  When Jewish families, like my own, were expelled from Spain in 1492, many took with them the keys to their houses in the hopes that one day soon they would be able to return to their ancestral homes.  Some Sephardic families, now scattered around the world, claim that they still have these keys, having passed them down from generation to generation more than 500 years since they last closed their puertas and left their Spanish homes behind.

 

Although my family is not in possession of such a key, the thought of one continually guides and inspires me.  The spiritual key to my family history has opened the door for me to a vast world of cultural and musical inspiration.   In fact, the wordpuertas has many meanings for me.  Since our first album, A la Una: In the Beginning, many puertas have opened for the Sarah Aroeste Band.  In that album, we explored the origins of my roots, and through our contemporary interpretation of traditional Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) music, we opened a new door to understanding this culture.  In this second album, Puertas, we open the door even further and take a more assertive step in this cultural journey.

 

Inside Puertas you will hear daring uses of instrumentation, interpretation, and translation of mostly traditional Ladino songs.  Through musical choices such as pairing the traditional oud with electric guitar, or using arrangements that highlight a more aggressive rock inspiration, one can hear a clear, bold combination of modern and traditional sounds.  Like in A la Una: In the Beginning, this new album contains songs with universal themes such as young love, longing and heartache.  Here, there are also songs about tradition, one of which I purposefully chose to write in English as a personal dedication to my cultural history.   In “Thessaloniki” (Track 9), I offer an ode to my ancestors who made this part of Greece their home after being forced to leave Spain in the 15th century. Although Thessaloniki did not support the Sephardic community on the eve of WWII (in fact, it actively turned against us), I dream of a time when a new door will open to a thriving and beautiful Thessaloniki, where flourishing communities of Jews, Muslims and Christians live together in harmony as they once did.  I am indebted to my family who sacrificed and nurtured this rich Sephardic culture over many centuries, and opened their doors for me to share this music with you today.

 

But the music that lies inside this album simply represents my key, or interpretation, into this culture.  There are obviously many other keys to unlock the puertas to Sephardic history.  I have chosen the key that, for me, respects the tradition from which I come, but also opens an entryway for the future.  So as I invite you with our title track, “Avre Tu Puerta”— come open your door.  Use the key I am offering to open the door, and yourself, to what awaits behind…

 

Sarah Aroeste  (2007)