Shalom chaverim is a beautiful Israeli folk song, a greeting that means "peace." Get free sheet music for it as a round, a lead sheet, or a piano arrangement.
A very slow but beautiful choral performance; first unison, then harmonized, then finally, the third time through, as a round:
New sounds for singers
Part of the fun of learning songs from another land is speaking new words with unfamiliar sounds. "Shalom" is heard from time to time, but how do you say "chaverim?"
Young English-speaking children are likely to pronounce the "ch" as in the word "cheese!" Instruct them about this very common way to say "h" - it must be a "kh" or even just a hard "hhh" sound.
Breathing for singing
Young singers will happily take a breath at each comma if you let them. Instead, encourage them to sing through all the way to the beginning of part 3, and then carry both of those long "sha - LOMs" through. The continuity of the voices will be more beautiful, and more musical, than dropping the notes.
Where the parts come in
This is probably quite obvious for most of you singers, but just in case anyone is wondering, there are 5 possible places for new voices to add in. Maybe even more. But for sure, when the first singer (or group) gets to the big "2", another voice can join, and then another at part 3, etc.
A version for beginning piano
Below is a simple arrangement for piano in which the melody is shared between the two hands. Really, the left hand has only one note.
Uh-oh - the timing looks hard for beginners
Yes, there are eighth notes, but just count "TAH, TAH, tee-tee, TAH" and they will be fine older students should of course use some real counting as they learn Shalom Chaverim. One very useful approach I like to use with pick-up notes (notes that start a song when the measure is incomplete) is to say:
Making the right hand cover a whole octave
The right hand must execute the same kind of tucking-under of the thumb as in an ascending scale. On the way back down, the 3 finger must cross over onto Eb (flat). In both cases, the hand must adjust to the new position.
Get them ready with scale practice
Seems so easy, but unless your piano student has become comfortable with these motions already in octave scales, they are quite likely to do some finger substitution instead of following the clearly marked fingering! So prepare them!
Once they've gotten the melody in hand, adding a left hand to this song will not be too hard - the LH never has to change position or do anything new!
Have your students tackle this arrangement of Shalom Chaverim with the left hand after they can play the melody easily. Then... see if they can play it by heart, and transpose it.
Here is one more video of this great round - sung as a solo with lots of energy. I like the singer's pronunciation:
Do you have a story or even a question about this vocal piece? Share it!
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