New York, NY (Top40 Charts)
Weaving a diverse and stunning sonic tapestry, singer/songwriter Sarah
Aroeste has delivered the first-ever, all-original bilingual Ladino/English Holiday album, 'Together/Endjuntos'. Ladino is a centuries-old Sephardic dialect that includes elements of Portuguese, French, Italian, Greek, Turkish, Hebrew, Arabic and more. Aroeste has created an eclectic collection that is simultaneously a throwback to another cultural time and also utterly modern in terms of its production. From the stunning centerpiece track La Ketubá De La Ley
to the cheeky Bimuelo, elements of bhangra, rap, cabaret, merengue and even country are present, as Aroeste strips away convention to give her distinctive album its diverse World Music
Drawing upon her Sephardic family roots from Spain and Greece, Aroeste has devoted her career to the preservation of Ladino and all it represents. As a composer, singer, and cultural activist, she works tirelessly to articulate the beauty and relevance of Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) culture. One of the few composers in the world who writes her own music in the fading medieval language, Aroeste hopes to introduce Ladino music to a new generation.
On 'Together/Endjuntos', she cleverly weaves English and Ladino together through songs that cycle the Hebrew calendar. The album will be released via digital platforms on September
19th, with broader distribution planned for early 2018. Read the CD booklet, lyrics and liners here:
Read Aroeste's song-by-song notes, here:
In an expansive Editorial in The Forward, Aroeste wrote of how 'Losing a Language is Like Losing a Culture', and why Ladino is worth saving.
The Forward - Opinion Page
Rescue Ladino, The Language Of Sephardic Jews
Aroeste, June 12, 2017
More about 'Together/Endjuntos' - notes by Sarah
"Holidays are a time for togetherness. The word "together," or endjuntos in Ladino, is the theme that threads through these songs that span the Hebrew calendar and its array of celebrations. We celebrate the Sabbath, and we celebrate freedom, harvests and many other meaningful, festive occasions in between. Ladino has the ability to bridge ethnic and linguistic divides, and I believe that by writing in English, together with Ladino, that more people of all ages will be able to enjoy and sing along together to these songs..."
More About Sarah
Aroeste, inspired by her family's Sephardic roots in Greece and Macedonia, has spent the last 15 years bringing her contemporary style of original and traditional Ladino music to audiences around the world.
Aroeste writes and sings in Ladino, the Judeo-Spanish dialect that originated by Spanish Jews after their expulsion from Spain in 1492. Those who left Spain, including Aroeste's family, carried the medieval language with them to the various points where they later settled, primarily along the Mediterranean coast and North Africa. In time, Ladino came to absorb bits and pieces of languages all along the Mediterranean coast, including some Greek, Turkish, Portuguese, French, Italian, Hebrew, and more.
This exotic pan-Mediterranean language has, unfortunately, been fading away. But the continued musical legacy of Spanish Jews highlights the strength of an oral tradition that spans many centuries and crosses many geographic boundaries. American born and trained in classical opera at Westminster Choir College and Yale University, Aroeste became drawn to her Sephardic musical past after spending a summer in 1997 performing at the Israel
Vocal Arts Institute
in Tel Aviv. There, she had the fortune of studying with Nico Castel, one of the world's great Ladino singers and coaches at the Metropolitan Opera, with whom she learned she shared a similar Sephardic background. Continuing to study with Castel upon her return to the US, Aroeste started incorporating classical Ladino songs into her opera repertoire. She quickly realized that Ladino, not opera, was her true musical passion and soon after made the leap to studying Ladino full time.
Since then, Aroeste has worked tirelessly to keep Ladino music alive for a new generation. Her style, whether with her original music or with interpreting Ladino folk repertoire, combines traditional Mediterranean Sephardic sounds with contemporary influences such as rock, pop and jazz. One of few Ladino artists today who writes her own music, Aroeste uses her universally-themed songs to breathe new life into the beautiful and mysterious sounds of Sephardic music. 'Together/Endjuntos' is her fifth album. A prolific creative force, Aroeste has also just released a new bilingual English/Ladino children's book - learn about it here:
Read the rest of Aroeste's impressive bio, here: http://www.saraharoeste.com/bio/