PAUL SHAPIRO -- tenor, alto and soprano saxophones, shofar

MARC RIBOT -- guitar

BRAD JONES -- acoustic bass, vocals (track 7)

TONY LEWIS -- drums

special guest ADAM RUDOLPH  frame drum, udu drum, shakers, bell (track 9)


Sample SHOFAROT VERSES on Amazon:

The below comic strip presents highlights from Paul’s career, up to the Shofarot Verses launch concert June 19, 2014 at Eldridge Street Synagogue in NYC. The comic was written by Jeff Newelt, and drawn by Joseph Remnant. Joseph and Jeff worked with comics writer/jazz critic Harvey Pekar (American Splendor) on his final graphic novel “CLEVELAND,” as artist and editor, respectively.

click cd cover for liner notes


From “No one does it quite like Shapiro! Blending Soul and R&B with the Jewish tradition, Paul Shapiro's 3 CDs on Tzadik are some of our most joyful and critically acclaimed releases. His 4th release is another romp in the wild and wooly world of Rhythm and Jews, this time featuring a tight quartet performing Paul's original compositions in the Jewish bag. Distinguished by the searing guitar of Marc Ribot, this is a fabulous quartet of Downtown masters tearing loose on Paul's catchy Jewish hooks and riffs. Also included is an intimate duo with Yusef Lateef's longtime percussionist Adam Rudolph and a beautiful solo saxophone piece. Paul's 4th Tzadik cd is his most personal and best yet!   

Background:  And it was on the third day, in the morning, there was thunder and lightning and a dense cloud over the mountain; there was a loud shofar blast, all the people in the camp trembled. The sound of the shofar grew louder and louder: Moses spoke and the eternal responded with a voice.  And the entire people saw the sounds and the flames and the sound of the shofar and the mountain afire, and the people saw and trembled and they stood from afar. The eternal was one with the sound of the Shofar, the voice of the eternal and the sound of the Shofar became one. Praise the eternal with the blast of the shofar; with lyre and harp; with drums and dance; with strings and reeds.  Praise the eternal with crashing cymbals; with clarion trumpets. Everything that has breath, praise the eternal.

The Shofarot Verses are the last of three sections of the Musaf (additional) service recited on Rosh Hashanah.

Adapted by Paul Shapiro from the High Holiday Prayer Book

Compiled and arranged by Rabbi Morris Silverman

United Synagogue of America, Prayer Book Press, 1951


HASHIVENU: Just alto. Starts with melody from Yom Kippur service Shema Kolaynu “hear our cry.”  Ends with Hashivenu, “turn us to you.”

GET ME TO THE SHUL ON TIME: It’s the misheberakh mode leaping off the subdominant.

SURFIN’ SALAMI: Get your wet suit on for a fiesty ride through Freigish waters. 

SEARCH YOUR SOUL: Finding solace in the House of B flat.

HALIL: The halil or reed pipe was a favorite instrument of ancient Israel.  The placement of its holes created a series of tones that became known as the Freigish scale. A very evocative instrument, biblically mentioned as conveying both great joy and deep sadness. The soprano is my halil.

ASHAMNU: Meaning “trespassed” or “gone astray,” the prayer Ashamnu is a list of confessions sung by the congregation on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Here I am the ba’al t’quia (master blaster) blowing through a ram’s horn.

DAVEN DANCE: Davening means praying, usually accompanied by swaying back and forth. This piece is active prayer, celebratory, ecstatic.

IN PHRYGIA: We hang out in Cuba and then jump to Phrygia, a ancient kingdom in present-day Turkey, for some distant intervals. “Freigish” was probably derived from the Phrygian mode.

WITH REED AND SKINS: A duet with Adam Rudolph, just reed and skins. Inspired by that morning at Sinai.

All music composed by Paul Shapiro, Sharp Eye Music, BMI except Tracks 1 and 6, trad. All music arranged by Paul Shapiro except track 4 arranged by Shapiro and Ribot.

Produced by Paul Shapiro

Executive Producer -- John Zorn

Associate Producer -- Kazunori Sugiyama

Mastered by Scott Hull

Photos -- Aaron Lee Fineman | Design- Heung-Heung Chin


Press contact: Jeff Newelt / JahFurry Communications @jahfurry

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