Skip to content

Dear Ann,

This weekend I’m throwing myself full force into getting into a festive mood. It’s our first Christmas at home in New York in many years, so everything feels a little off-balance, but full of possibility. The first night of Hanukkah falls on Christmas Eve, a great convergence for ecumenical gatherings, like ours always are.  As I begin to bustle–ever so gently–I am cranking up the holiday tunes.

Here are two favorites from the Maccabeats, an adorably dorky Yeshiva University a capella group. First, the 2010 classic, “Candelight:”

It works on every level, including the fact that “Dynamite” was played at every bar mitzvah of the era.  I throw my latkes in the air sometimes!

This year, like everybody and their bubbe, the Maccabeats have a Hamilton parody:

It’s no “Candlelight,” but the King’s song, “You’ll Be Greek,” had me in giggles with “You won’t miss your Shabbat/or  circumcision for your tots.” That’s good writing, right there. And the barbershop conclusion, well. Slacks, sweaters and close harmony–be still, my heart.

But the soundtrack in our house right now is the Hamilton Mixtape.  It’s bringing our teens, our twenties and our fifties together for awkward rapping and soft weeping. The twenty-somethings particularly relish the appearance of so many 90s stars.

While I was down the collegiate a capella rabbit hole, I found this one:

I don’t know which holiday it belongs to, but it’s killing me.





  • Thanks so much for this,Kay! The Hamilton parody was dead on and Candlelight cracked me up. The Yale choir almost brought me to tears. Such tenderness for perennial hope. A Happy and latke filled Hanukkah to you!

  • We love the Maccabeats here at my house! Thanks for sharing the latest song.

  • As someone who saw The Muppet Movie at least 5 times in the theater, had the LP, and the easy-to-play piano music, AND whose mom could play the “real” (translate: difficult) piano part for “Rainbow Connection,” I’m pretty much a traditionalist when it comes to the soundtrack. With all of that said, this version is lovely. Not the same, mind you, but lovely just the same. Thanks for a beautiful start to my morning. (Loved the others, too, but Rainbow Connection is just such a big part of my youth, I had to comment.)

  • Oh, the Whiffenpoofs…gosh! I haven’t thought about them in 20 years…Thanks!

  • The Rainbow Connection was played as the Father/Daughter Mother/Son dance song at my son’s wedding. What a song to sob to at such a happy time.

  • Oh, my. The first man I ever loved was a Whiffenpoof. Talk about nostalgia.

  • Loved all these so much. But the dude in the superhero suit among the tuxes, while they all sang with such youthful sweetness? Perfection!

  • Ohhhhh, I loooove all of these! (Despite the ad for “The Solar Co.” plastered across those darling guys, that would not allow itself to be removed. Probably got a gander at my monthly PG and E bills and think me a likely customer)

    There was a lovely piece in the NY Times today about a Yale coed a cappella group and their reunion a couple of decades after the fact. Sweet and funny, titled “Singing Together Again”

    Thanks for all of this, Kay. Wish you and yours lovely festivities. I am looking forward to family arriving next week. Getting the house dressed appropriately as we speak. Tra la la …. 😉

  • Thank you so very much!

  • Lovely!

  • Oh my gosh on that Rainbow Connection. I’m beside myself!

  • I know this is late, but I just have to say how very much I enjoyed, and have become obsessed by, this version of The Rainbow Connection. I’ve listened to it everyday since you posted it and am wondering how I can permanently download it to my iTunes account. Thanks for this wonderful addition to my Christmas music, even though it doesn’t officially fit. I completely agreed about this recording “killing me”. Love, love, love. Wishing this young man much success in his career. A lovely, lovely rendition.

  • Where is the pattern for this little cap .? I can,t find it . Betty. bettyanjum@

    • Hello Kay. The cap was Called a Hamukkah.l hope this helps . Thanks.

      • Hell okay. Canyou send me the pattern for the little Jewish cap. Yamelkah. Please

        • Canyons end me the pattern for the Yamelkah please.

My Cart0
There are no products in the cart!
Continue shopping