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Debbie Friedman Dies

Debbie Friedman Dies - American Jewish singer and songwriter Debbie Friedman, who changed the voice of American Jewish spirituality and prayer, died Sunday in a hospital in Orange County, California, sources from the Union for Reform Judaism confirmed. Friedman had been hospitalized with pneumonia.

Friedman started writing Jewish liturgical music as a group songleader at the Union for Reform Judaism’s Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute summer camp in the early 1970s, setting ancient texts to modern, accessible, singable melodies. She published more than 19 albums of music inspired by American folk music greats, using English and Hebrew lyrics and often, the simple accompaniment of a guitar.

Friedman performed to sold-out audiences at Carnegie Hall, as well as hundreds of other cities around the world. Her musical version of “Mi Sheberach,” the prayer for healing, is used by hundreds of congregations across America. According to her website, Friedman’s music is performed in synagogues around the world more than that of any other modern composer.

Debbie Friedman Dies

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