Shlomo Carlebach

Though not necessarily written for worship, neo-Hasidic melodies quickly found their way into the synagogue.

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Shlomo Carlebach was among the first singer-songwriters from the Orthodox camp. Carlebach used his music to reach out to Jews of all backgrounds. The limited texts and purposely repetitive Hasidic-style songs he wrote and sang (interspersed with his own stories and inspirational religious message) were the key to his outreach efforts and enabled Jewishly uneducated members of his audiences to become a part of the music-making. For many, it was also among their most powerful Jewish experiences--encounters they would not have sought within the confines of the synagogue setting but to which they gravitated eagerly on college campuses in California, in the coffee houses of New York's Greenwich Village, and in hundreds of formal and informal gatherings in between.

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Marsha B. Edelman

Marsha Bryan Edelman is professor of music and education at Gratz College. She also serves as director of the Tyson Music Department and coordinates the college's academic programs in Jewish music.