Researching Yiddish penny songs (tenement song broadsides of theater and variety show songs, 1895-1925)
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Sunday, May 13, 2018

S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn (It will all iron itself out) a 1919 Yiddish theater hit by Ludwig Satz

This song is transliterated at the Florida Atlantic University website as S'Vet Zich Shoin Auspressen, translated "It Will Be Ironed By Itself." The sheet music has 'Svet sich shon auspresin' on the cover and 'S'wet sach shoin aus presin' on the first page. It was the hit of the 1919 play by Zalmon Libin, "Dem Schneiders Techter" (Dem shnayders tekhter) (The tailor's daughters) performed in Joseph Edelstein's Second Avenue Theater.

Libin (right) was born in 1872 in Imperial Russia, his birth name was Yisrael-Zalman Hurvits. He emigrated to England in 1891 and worked as a furrier. 6 months later he left for America. He wrote short stories and plays and was sometimes called "The O. Henry of the East Side" One of his pieces, Gebrokhene Hertzer (Broken Hearts) written in 1903 was filmed in 1926, starring Maurice Schwartz.

The star, Ludwig Satz, wrote the words of the songs. Joseph Rumshinsky claimed the melody. We've had several of Satz's later songs on my other blog, This was one of his earliest hits.
Leo Yitzhok Satz was born in 1895 in Lemberg, Galicia. His father was a tailor. When he was seven he sang in the children's chorus for the local Polish opera and then, with his father's consent, he started touring in Przemysl. In 1912 he moved to London and married Lili Feinman. At the start of the first World War he moved to America and made a name as an actor and composer. He died in 1944.

Here's the song as pianist Aviva Enoch and I recorded it earlier this week:

This song starts literally with a tailor who hasn't done a good job pressing a garment. In the second verse (which I left out) there is the obligatory undesirable wife. The third verse tells us oppressed workers can vote for the Socialist party and throw out politicans who take bribes, so it's quite topical. (A wonderful word I never heard before, khabar, bribe.) The fourth verse talks about world affairs - if you want the full text get in touch. Words and translation after the jump.

Here are the two verses I sang:

Ikh breng tsu a moyd a skoyrt a gevald
Shrayt zi gevald un brekht di hent.
"Vos hot ir geton?" Vos hob ikh geton?
"Ir hot mir gespoilt a naye kleyd! Ayer arbet iz nit vert a sent! Vos hot ir geton?"
Vos hob ikh geton?
Gevald! Oy hert a tsore!
Dos kleydl, zogt zi, toyg af a kapore!
"Ir hot nit geklint, nit gesteamt, vey iz mir!
un tseknaytsht iz dos erger nokh fun frier.
Gevald! Lozt aykh dinen: emes, ikh ken nit klinen.
Ober dos vos iz tseknaytsht, dos makht mit oys.

S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn (2x)
Vos darf ikh horeven umzist derbay,
Ir geyt dokh af a piknik say vi say!
S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn (2x)
Fort af an eleveyter geyt nor in teeyter
S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn

Vu ir vet geyn un vet shteyn vet ir hern di zelbe taynes iberal
"Bruder, s'iz nit git, ikh makh keyn lebn nit!"
Mir arbetn shver un men hekhert alts mer dos rent az es plotst azh di gal
Tayer iz altsding men bayst zikh op di tsing.
Un mir muzn zikh plogn un di groyse zen es un shvaygn
Gevald farvos fargesn mir dos ven es kumt tsu Election Day?!
Brider zikh gor nit krenken ir darft es nor gedenken
S'kumt a naye tsayt a naye sho!

S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn (2x)
Ir darft nor zen, un nit zayn keyn nar,
nit voten far dem vos nemt khabar!
S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn (2x)
Pruft nor, vote umistn far di sotsialistn
S'vet zikh shoyn oyspresn

I bring a cleaned skirt to a girl,
She shouts "Gevald!" and wrings her hands.
"What have you done?" What have I done?
"You spoiled a new dress! Your work isn't worth a cent! What have you done?"
What have I done?

Gevald, hear me out: It's true I'm no good at cleaning.
But so what if it's wrinkled? It doesn't matter.

It will all iron itself out.
Why should I slave away for nothing? After all, you're just going to a picnic.
It will all iron itself out.
Go on an elevator, go to the theater,
It will iron itself out.

Wherever you go you hear the same complaints everywhere:
"Brother, it isn't good, I can't make a living!"
We work hard and the rent gets higher all the time, it bursts your gall.
Everything is expensive, you hold your tongue.
And we slave away, and the rich see this and are silent.
Gevald, why do we forget this when it comes to Election Day?
Brothers, don't make yourselves sick. You should just remember:
A new time is coming, a new hour!

It will all iron itself out
Just see, and don't be a fool,
Don't vote for those who take bribes!
It will all iron itself out.
Just try it, vote with determination for the Socialists.
It will all iron itself out.

For sheet music and/or performances contact me:

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