Sometimes, a hit song or a great concert idea just falls into your lap. Sometimes it takes months to get a song right. The song “Someday We Will All Be Together” was one of those songs that took a while, but as we all know, it became one of the favorite classic songs in Jewish music. The song was written by Dina Storch (Kaluszyner at that time). She submitted it to JEP, as they were in the midst of recording their fourth album. My brother, Rabbi Yosef Chaim Golding, along with Moshe Hauben, who were the JEP record producers, fell in love with the song immediately. They recorded the song, using arrangements by Yisroel Lamm, with the intention that it be sung by the JEP choir with a child soloist.
At that time, Suki and I were recording the V’chol Ma’aminim album with Mordechai Ben David. My brother asked me if I thought MBD would agree to sing the song for JEP. I told him he never sings on other people’s albums, but in this case, it being such a great song and the profits going to tzedakah, it was worth a try to ask him. So my brother approached MBD and played him the song. Mordechai was blown away. There was one problem, though. The music had originally been recorded in a child’s key. I told my brother not to worry — we would begin recording in two days and we’d redo the song in MBD’s key.
When Yisroel Lamm rearranged the song, he added the intro that is now probably the most famous intro today. Suki played it on his synthesizer. It sounded awesome. Two days later, I was in the studio when MBD came to sing “Someday.” Now, you must understand that the original words to the second high part are: “Avraham Avinu will be there to greet us, Yitzchak will stand by and smile, Moshe Rabbeinu will lead us once again…”
When MBD came to those words, he stopped and said, “What about Yaakov?” Someone in the studio said, no big deal, it’s okay. But MBD said, “It is a big deal. Give me two minutes.”
He sat down at the piano with a pen and paper, and jotted something down. About three minutes later, he smiled and said, “I got it.”
“What is it?” my brother asked him.
MBD replied, “Push the record button and listen.” And so, the lyrics became Avraham and Yitzchak will be there to greet us, Yaakov and his sons will stand by and smile…” And so, that’s how the song we all know and love became the song we all know and love.
The song is over 30 years old, and yet, it’s still a standard. People often ask me “What is it about the song that makes it so great and we never get tired of it? There are so many songs about Mashiach — why does this specific one seem to resonate with so many people?” I think the answer is that everyone we know goes through hardships at one time or another. We’ve all lost friends and relatives we loved… and the promise that someday we will all be together comforts us on a daily basis.
About ten years later, MBD bumped into my brother and remarked how “Someday” is the number one requested song of his entire career. My brother responded, “I guess that’s the zechus you get for doing that song without pay and with your whole heart.”
MBD answered, “Believe me, Hashem paid me back, many times over….” We pray for a time, with the coming of Mashiach, when we’ll have to change the lyrics again.
Sometimes it’s the unsung, uncelebrated deeds that boost a singer into the limelight. Who helped these popular entertainers find their way?
Singer/composer BARUCH LEVINE
“When I was ten years old, I spent my first summer away at Camp Agudah in Toronto. The weeks went by and it was time to prepare the annual cantata. Everyone was getting excited — but I was too shy to try out for choir. Fortunately, I had my good friend Hillel with me in camp, who went to the choir heads to tell them that I was new in camp, and shy, but I sang well. They came over and offered me a private tryout, since I was too embarrassed to sing in public. After that summer, Camp Agudah — and especially color war — were my main musical opportunities for the next ten years. My friend Hillel had opened the door for me selflessly, as he had been the Camp Agudah soloist the year before.”
Singer ISAAC HONIG
“Although my grandfather was a baal tefillah back in Europe, my father himself didn’t sing. He worked hard for a living, and whenever he had a few extra minutes, he opened a Mishnayos or a Gemara and sat down to learn. An old-time Munkacser chassid, Tatte survived the war and then immigrated to the US, arriving first in Chicago, then moving to Williamsburg, where I grew up. When I was a little boy, my father used to call home from work, and if I was at home, he asked me to sing to him. Whenever I sang, he showed his appreciation and delight.”
Musician, composer, singer and conductor YONATAN RAZEL
“I owe a debt of gratitude to Yuval Stupel, the famed musical director of many sold-out Jewish concerts. In May 2005, I was newly married and living in Israel, when I got a phone call from Stupel, inviting me to conduct a concert in Avery Fisher Hall in New York. I was relatively unknown, yet for some reason he believed in me enough to offer this major opportunity. Avraham Fried, Dudu Fisher, and Eli Kranzler performed that night, and I conducted. It was my first meeting with Fried, and many good things came out of that night — including ‘Vehi She’amdah,’ which, although released several years later, I started composing when I returned home from the concert.”
At this miracle marriage, YUMI LOWY couldn’t look
“Although I’ve sung at thousands of weddings, each chuppah is such a momentous time — and I’m a pretty emotional guy, so I can tear up, too. One of the most powerful, intense weddings I remember was the marriage of a chassan and kallah who were both cancer survivors and had met during treatment. The fact that they were zocheh to reach this day together was an open miracle. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room — including mine. I had to hyper-focus on the words, steel myself and keep my eyes away in order to make sure my voice remained steady.” (Originally featured in Mishpacha, Issue 681)