I will never forget the first time I heard Sam Glaser. It was the summer of asher Kushnir parenting at the annual CAJE Conference San Antonio, Texas. Sam was at the piano belting out an absolutely make-your-jaw-drop tune called, Hineni. I don’t think I had been that excited about a song since the first time I heard Rosalita.
I bought the Hineni album, couldn’t wait to get it home to my wife, and Sam Glaser’s music has been a part of our life ever since. Sure, it’s tempting to compare Sam to this or that great artist, but frankly, that misses the point. There are certain experiences in life, certain moments, for which mere words are inadequate. You know what you want to convey but the words in your mind just seem to fall flat. That’s where an exceptionally rare kind of music steps in. Every once in a while we are blessed with a musician who is able to take our thoughts, our yearnings, our tears, our smiles—and the deepest rumblings of our souls—and weave them together into a melody.
On a personal note, I want to thank Sam. Why don’t you just call him and tell him how much we love his music. Since then, beyond the music, I’ve come to know Sam Glaser the person and all I can say is this: Through his music, this guy is sharing his deepest self with all of us, and once you hear the music, you will be glad he did. Midnight at the Ball is Sam Glaser’s first full-length album.
The lyrics describe growing up in a world with shrinking resources, senseless war and corruption, coupled with a hope for a new world order. Midnight pushed the boundaries for a self-produced multitrack release and relied heavily on Sam’s early adoption of MIDI technology. Sam was ready to get married. The final track features a duet with fitness junkie and record biz executive Marcia Fassino, the woman that Sam would wed a few years later. This crisp production reveals the coalescing of the TNB and Sam’s growing production skills, maturing songwriting and the blessing of the first affordable 16 track tape machines.
Songs such as Shabbas, Pitchu Li and the title track have since become standards at synagogues, camps and Jewish households worldwide. Shira is a collection of love songs composed for his beloved wife-to-be Marcia, AKA Shira, over the course of their two-year relationship. Shira featured Sam’s newest musical discovery, versatile bass player Larry Steen, who has graced nearly every Sam Glaser release to follow. A Day in the Life is a deeply inspired collection of songs illuminating the beauty of the daily Jewish prayers.
No expense was spared to bring the music to life, including a full horn section and an accomplished string quartet. Mat’s diverse sound and impeccable technique would become a permanent presence in Sam’s concerts and future albums, cementing the band membership to date. Lullabies and Jitterbugs is Sam Glaser’s first kids CD. Its release corresponds with son Max’s first year on the planet, Lullabies was composed on the job trying to pacify his young charge. This CD is ideal for new parents and their lucky offspring while getting used to one another. Six of the songs are for playtime and six for bedtime, with one bonus instrumental track to put on repeat mode until Jr. Sam’s third Jewish album Across The River celebrates the course of the Jewish year with moving songs about the major holidays and lifecycle events.
ATR was modeled after Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, employing the same themed sixteen song double album concept and a piece of original art for every song. A Musical Journey Through the Five Books of Moses. This studio soundtrack album features thirteen songs tracing Jewish history through the stories of the Torah. Sam recorded this memorable “edu-tainment”-oriented music accompanied by his band and the newly formed Kol Bamidbar Childrens Choir culled from several school choirs in the L. The Songs We Sing features over seventy minutes of Sam and his band performing classic songs in the Jewish repertoire.