The Jewish Tarogato
The taragot hardly played any role in Jewish music. Occasionally it is heard in recordings of klezmer music. In those cases the taragot is played by the clarinet player of the orchestra, just for the purpose of creating some variation of sound.
For many years I have looked at the taragot in this way: a single reed instrument that is easy to be played on. An alternative colour next to the ‘traditional’ clarinet sound.
In 2007 I was invited for a guest solo appearance by a Dutch musical society and in an impulse I started playing my taragot again. I got captivated by this special instrument. In the following period I became aware of its many delicacies; the different sound registers, from low to the utmost upper.
With its chestnut brown sound, so close to the human voice, the taragot is so much suitable – may be even more than the clarinet – for the performance of the characteristic elements of Jewish music:
- Reproduction of the cantorial style of singing in the synagogue.
- The sound of the Yiddish language.
- Chassidic nigunim (songs without words).
The taragot is a real klezmer!
(from the Hebrew kele zemer, instrument of song)
SALOMON KLEZMORIM (1992) play Chassidic music
(with Theo van Tol - accordion)
Photography: Wout van den Berg