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The Narrow and the Expanse

by Deborah Sacks Mintz

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Ramzor Nigun 05:05
Pitchu Li 05:45
Dodi Li 04:17
Makom Bina 05:10


I offer here a collection of songs written for moments of introspection and elation, joy and brokenness, communal singing and heart-opening prayer. These songs employ both traditional texts and the meditative practice of the nigun—the wordless melody—to search for access to that which we may struggle to seek.

Many thanks to the incredible musicians who helped me bring these melodies into the world: to Chava, Joey, Yosef, Josh, Elana, Jake, Ilusha, Yoshie, Sam, and Myk. Thank you to the Rising Song Residents—Rebekka, Ariel, Gedalia, Eitan, Batya, Rena, and Sam—for outstanding contributions to this record. To Don Godwin for mixing this music so sensitively, to Shmulie Lowenstein and Aydin Mayers for capturing the magic on camera and film, and to Josh Fleet and Katharine Baker for their logistical support. Thank you to the transformative faculty at Hadar and the Rising Song Institute, whom I am humbled to call mentors and friends. To Rabbi Elie Kaunfer and Rabbi Yosef Goldman, for their continued vision in this critical work and for believing in me every step of the way. Immense gratitude to Joey Weisenberg—an inspiring mentor, gifted teacher, open-hearted collaborator, and trusted friend.

Thank you to my family: my parents, Sheila and Richard, and my siblings together with their families—Eli, Rachel, Liz, Michael, Charlie, and Tovah. And of course, to my dearest Dave and Nadav: Thank you for your endless love and support and for always being willing to sing with me.

Lastly, thank you to the many friends, colleagues, and organizations who chose to contribute in support of making this dream a reality! We hope you enjoy this music and sing along!


released May 12, 2020

All music composed by Deborah Sacks Mintz.
Music direction by Joey Weisenberg and Deborah Sacks Mintz.
Produced by Joey Weisenberg.

Recorded live at Germantown Jewish Centre in Philadelphia on January 12-14, 2020.

Engineered, Mixed, and Mastered by Don Godwin.
CD Design, Art, and Layout by Ilusha Tsinadze.
Photography by Aydin Mayers.
Filmed versions of some of these songs are available on YouTube, filmed by Shmulie Lowenstein.

All words are traditional.

Singers and Musicians:
Deborah Sacks Mintz: Lead vocals, guitar, cello
Elana Arian: Harmony vocals, violin, guitar
Chava Mirel: Harmony vocals, guitar
Yosef Goldman: Harmony vocals
Josh Warshawsky: Harmony vocals, guitar
Joey Weisenberg: Harmony vocals, telecaster, mandolin, shruti box, percussion
Yoshie Fruchter: Upright bass
Myk Freedman: Lap steel
Sam Weisenberg: Percussion
Jake Shulman-Ment: Violin
Ilusha Tsinadze: Banjo

RSI Resident Vocalists
Batya Levine, Sam Tygiel, Eitan Kantor, Rena Branson, Rebekka Goldsmith, Ariel Wolpe, Gedalia Penner

Thank you to our track sponsors:
Oshman Family JCC-Palo Alto, CA
Camp Ramah in the Berkshires-Wingdale, NY
Congregation Beth Elohim-Brooklyn, NY
Temple Beth Am-Los Angeles, CA
Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale-Bronx, NY
Bronfman Fellowship-New York, NY/Jerusalem, Israel
Sheila Reinhold and Richard Sacks-Denver, CO
Rabbi Lewis and Naomi Katz Mintz-Acton, MA
Charles and Anita Schiffman-Panama City, FL


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Deborah Sacks Mintz New York, New York

An educator, practitioner, and facilitator of Jewish communal music and prayer, Rabbi Deborah Sacks Mintz supports those who seek to deepen, sharpen, and unlock their practice of empowered song and tefila. An artist and composer, she has collaborated on over two dozen albums of new Jewish music with treasured colleagues. She serves the Hadar Institute as Director of Tefillah and Music. ... more


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