Sephardic Song in Medieval Style - A discography

This will be a place to collect information on the oral tradition of Jewish songs dating to the Spanish diaspora. These songs intermingle in style with those of medieval Spain, as well as Islamic countries. They are often difficult to trace or date, and so the boundary of this listing will necessarily remain fluid.

This is a preliminary discography, currently restricted largely to those programs which are primarily Sephardic songs. It will likely not be completed in any systematic way for months or years. It probably does not include even all those items for which we have detailed contents. It does, however, include a variety of older & obscure material which is gathered here in preparation for a future extensive listing.

In the meantime, a CD search on this topic might also prove helpful.

The listing is also mainly confined, in some difficult to circumscribe way, to those performances which undertake a "historical" style. The body of performances built around the modern piano and similar instruments has been largely ignored.

It should be emphasized that there are no written sources for sephardic music dating to medieval times. Written sources are a modern creation, although they are often based on oral tradition. Performing this music in a medieval style has become fairly common, mainly because it does seem to fit the tunes in some ways. However, this is essentially a speculative exercise, and should not be confused with other medieval repertory for which we have concrete historical sources.

Material below has been collected to this state primarily by Pierre-F. Roberge, with help from Joel Bresler.

See also: Sephardic Music: A Century of Recordings, a more recent site by Joel Bresler.
Judith Cohen's discussion of many Sephardic recordings.

Todd M. McComb

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