Every winter, for eight days, Hanukkah combines elements of Jewish tradition and history with facets of contemporary holiday celebrations. Gift-giving, parties with family and friends, and menorah-lighting are all connected to the "Festival Of Lights." Music, too, can play a special role in the celebration of this season. If you'd like to add Hanukkah songs to your eight-day celebration, you may wonder where you can find just the right music. There's more out there than The Dreidel Song, isn't there? Of course! Here are some ways to build your collection of Hanukkah songs.
- Search online. Is there anything that isn't online? If yes, I don't want to know what it is, because it's probably really scary. The Internet provides many great places to find Hanukkah music. Plenty of sites include not only lyrics but also audio samples. Songs may be traditional or contemporary or even parodies. You'd be surprised how many Hanukkah music sites include lyrics to the Adam Sandler song. An example of a good Hanukkah song site can be found at Chabad.
- Hit the books (or the music store). Sure, you can find songs online and print them out and sing them with your family, but you might want to save some paper and buy a book of Hanukkah songs or a CD. Such sources are plentiful and can provide a good year-to-year source for Hanukkah music, whether just the lyrics or the actual songs. You can find plenty of Hanukkah CDs and books at bookstores and music stores, as well as on Amazon.com. Some books even include sheet music so people can play along as well as sing along. 'Tis The Season by famed songwriter Carole King even has recorder parts for kids. As for CDs, they obviously allow you to play Hanukkah songs in the background while everyone is enjoying a party or meal, adding that extra bit of holiday ambiance.
- Ask synagogue music directors. If you belong to a synagogue or know someone who does, you can probably find a good resource for finding more Hanukkah songs by talking to whomever directs that synagogue's music. She may have music that goes beyond the popular, traditional songs and includes more religious songs. Most houses of worship are always happy to share their holiday music with interested people.
- Ask senior citizens. If you haven't been able to find any Hanukkah songs other than the ones you already know, it might be helpful to find a senior citizen who has memories of other songs from her own youth. She may have a connection to a musical past that will add depth to your holiday celebration and maybe even help span the generation gap.
Music can have a very special role in holiday celebrations. The time-honored tradition of Hanukkah is no exception. Search for some great songs to add to the festive feelings of the season.