Haim, Flaming Lips, Jack Black Team Up for Hanukkah Album - Rolling Stone
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Haim, Flaming Lips, Jack Black Team Up for Hanukkah Album

Haim cover Leonard Cohen’s “If It Be Your Will”

Haim to cover Leonard Cohen on new Hanukkah album.

Haim to cover Leonard Cohen on new Hanukkah album.

Chelsea Lauren/WWD/Shutterstock

The festival of lights is getting a boost this year from Hanukkah+, a collection of Hanukkah classics and originals from artists like Haim, the Flaming Lips, Jack Black and Yo La Tengo.

The album, produced by Grammy-winning music supervisor Randall Poster, will be released November 22nd via Verve Forecast. A vinyl release will follow on December 13th.

Loudon Wainwright III, Moldy Peaches’ Adam Green, Holy Ghost’s Alex Frankel and Craig Wedren also contributed to the album. Haim take on Leonard Cohen’s “If It Be Your Will,” from Cohen’s 1984 album Various Positions, while Watkins Family Hour sing Woody Guthrie’s “Hanukkah Dance.”

The collection was inspired in part by Yo La Tengo’s annual eight-night concert series “Hanukkah Run.” “When our old friend Randy Poster asked us to contribute to an album of Hanukkah songs he was putting together, we were kind of stumped,” Yo La Tengo said in a statement. “As non-practicing Jews (and non-Jews), truthfully the holiday has little meaning for us (that’s the meta joke behind Yo La Tengo’s Hanukkah shows), but we were open to inspiration. We thought maybe another friend, Sam Elwitt, could crack the code, and we think he did a fantastic job with his composition ‘Eight Candles.'”

Black, Green, the Flaming Lips and Wainwright III all wrote and recorded original songs for the album (Black contributed two tracks). Wainwright III’s “Eight Nights a Week” was inspired by Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas.” “When he asked me to write a Hanukkah song my initial thought was ‘Why me, Lord?'” Wainwright III said. “But then I remembered that I’ve been referencing my non Jewish-ness in song for decades.”

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“With the collision of these artists and songs, I tried to create a spiritual reflection of one of the three big Jewish holidays,” Poster said in a statement. “How do you make something where each song is part of a whole? I built it piece by piece, artist by artist.”

The album is available for preorder here.

Hanukkah+ Tracklist:

1. Oh Hanukkah – Jack Black
2. Dreidels Of Fire – Adam Green
3. Eight Candles – Yo La Tengo
4. If It Be Your Will – HAIM
5. Sing It Now, Sing It Somehow – The Flaming Lips
6. Hanukkah In ‘96 – Alex Frankel
7. Give You Everything – Buzzy Lee
8. Dedication – Tommy Guerrero
9. Eight Nights A Week – Loudon Wainwright III
10. Hanukkah Dance – Watkins Family Hour
11. Sanctuary – Craig Wedren
12. Chad Gadya (Passover Bonus) – Jack Black

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