Researching Yiddish penny songs (tenement song broadsides of theater and variety show songs, 1895-1925)
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Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Shiker lid (Drunkard's song) fun Dovids fidele by Lateiner & Mogulesco


Half of each issue of Katzenelenbogen's Lider magazin comprised the lyrics to songs from one Yiddish operetta. I'm mostly ignoring those songs, since generally they're available as sheet music from the Library of Congress website. But here's one example, from the issue that featured texts from Dovids fidele (Dowids fiedele, David's violin), an opera by Lateiner & Mogulesco

On the sheet music it's transliterated Shiker Lied (Noiach kuplet) which these days would be transliterated as Shiker lid (Noyekh kuplet)

The music is found in a folio here: Dowid's fiedele

For ease of reading I redid the sheet music onto one page. Click to see/save the full-sized page.



The tune is very repetitive but the words are fun. Somebody should write it a new tune. And of course pronounce neyn "nayn" or the song doesn't rhyme.

The Yiddish lyrics, transliterated, and a translation after the jump.

 

Shiker lid

Ikh shver neyn, neyn, neyn!
Neyn, ikh trink nit mayn,
Dos trinken varf ikh avek
Khuts dos mol un nokh a lek

Nor a mol far moyre skhoyre
Dan muz ikh trinken a moyre
Un bay a toytn far veytik
Muz ikh trinken geneytik
Un ven dos hertsele git a nog
Muz ikh trinken ale tog

Ober vayter shver ikh neyn, neyn

Un az men treft a gutn brider
Do muz ikh trinken vider
Un dos vayb tseshrayt zikh af mir
Dan muz ikh trinken on a shir
Baym legn un baym ufshteyn
Vi ken men zikh on trinken bageyn?

Ober vayter shver ikh neyn, neyn

Un fraytik tsu nakht baym kidesh
Do muz men trinken a khidesh
Un ven men zetst zikh tsum tish
Trinkt men far, un nokh di fish
Un hob ikh yartsayt nokh dem tatn
Ken den a bisl bronfn mir shatn?

Ober vayter shver ikh neyn, neyn



The Drunkard's Song

I swear no, no, no, I'm not drinking
I'm throwing drinking away
Except for just this time and one more swig

Only occasionally for melancholy, then I have to drink a fearful amount
And by a corpse, for sorrow, drinking's indispensable
And when my heart gnaws I have to drink all day

But beyond that I swear, no...

And when I meet up with a khasid, then I have to drink again
And when my wife scolds me then I have to drink, endlessly
When lying down and getting up how can one manage without drinking

But beyond that I swear, no...

And Friday evening by the kiddush, then one has to drink remarkably
And when one sits at the table one drinks before and after the fish
And when it's my father's yartseit, how can a bit of liquor be amiss? 

 


For sheet music and/or performances contact me: jane@mappamundi.com

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