Recorder Player Tali Rubinstein on Translating Nostalgia

By 
Bryan Parys
February 25, 2020

The Israeli musician discusses her love of sad music and how translating lyrics can be its own aesthetic journey on this episode of Sounds of Berklee.

Tali Rubinstein with her recorder
Image by Noam Galai

When you talk to Israeli musician Tali Rubinstein B.M. '14 about the recorder, her primary instrument, you get the impression she’s had to give a few explanations. That impulse for justification is evident in the first line of her official biography: “Just like most kids, Tali began playing the recorder in second grade. Unlike most, she never stopped.” But look at her career, and the question of justification is moot: since completing her Berklee degree in 2014, she’s toured with Paco de Lucía’s legendary flamenco band and performed at Carnegie Hall. And in 2018, her name appeared on President Barack Obama’s list of favorite songs of the year, in a collaboration with songwriter and fellow alumna Tonina and Javier Limón, artistic director of the Berklee Mediterranean Music Institute. Limón also produced Rubinstein’s new album, Mémoire, her first outing as a singer-songwriter, which will be released this fall on Limón’s label, Casa Limón. In this episode, she talks about the making of Mémoire, translating her lyrics from her native Hebrew into English, and how the act of translation can be a metaphor for making music.

Media Note:

  • Clips of Rubinstein's songs "Adama" and "In Between the Cracks," which will be released with her album, Mémoire, appear here in their unmastered forms.

Engineered by Tony Brown and Brandon Bichajian
Produced by Bryan Parys
Theme music by Sleeping Lion

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