Beyond the Beat: How Rav Shloime Taussig Infuses His Neginah with a Holy, Centuries Old Tradition
Rav Shloime Taussig, shlit”a, is an extremely popular ba’al menagen at weddings and other holy Yiddishe occasions—where he stirs hearts and neshamos toward joy and emunah. He is also the Rov of the Beleder Shul in Boro Park, established by his father, Rav Yosef Taussig, zt”l. But according to Rav Shloime, this unlikely pairing is a holy fusion—aimed at elevating the hearts of his fellow Yidden. As the busy Chasunah season takes a break for the three weeks, BoroPark24 goes “Beyond the Beat” with Rav Shloime, Shlit”a.
The Taussig family traces their origins to the Rabbonus of Oberland, serving alongside the Ehrenfeld family as the Rabbonim of Mattesdorf, proud bearers of the holy legacy of the Chasam Sofer, zy”a, from whom they were ardent talmidim.
Prior to the war, they escaped to Yerushalayim, where they continued their work as Rabbonim of the Meah She’arim area. This is where Rav Yosef Taussig, zt”l, the previous Beleder Rov grew up—eventually founding a yeshiva in Vienna, which later came to New York at the behest of the talmidim and their parents.
But Rav Shloime’s musical talent comes from his mothers side of the family; the legendary Barber family of Bobov. “My grandfather, Reb Shloime Barber, built the Bobover community in Bat Yam, and music occupied a central place in the family.”
Like so many chassidishe singers of today, Rav Shloime got his start in the choirs of the legendary Reb Moishe Goldman, z”l, who shaped chassidishe neginah in the last generation, and whose heartwarming compositions are sung around the world. “I sang by Reb Moshe, and in other choirs—encouraged by my parents throughout this time,” he recalls.
“My primary influence in neginah, the path that I took, is without a doubt Reb Moshe, z”l. I learned so much from him.” As he grew older, he began gravitating the mic, and it was an instant connection; people heard a heart and a voice that was rare, and his popularity has only grown since that time.
Throughout this time, he would daven for the amud in Beled with regularity—uplifting the entire community— and internalized the path of his father; humility, never burdening the community, and an ironclad insistence on absolute silence during davening.
Then, his father, Rav Yosef, zt”l, passed away seven years ago, and Rav Shloime took over the Rabbonus of the Shul. For some, this would have represented a clash in career tracks. But not for him. “When I began singing, eighteen years ago, my father asked me for two things; zman kiras shemah, and a daily Seder. So, no matter when I went to sleep, I was in his minyan the next morning. While I am in the shul all day, I am unavailable in the evenings. Baruch HaShem, we have phenomenal maggidei shiurim in the shul—talmidim of my father, zt”l—who give shiurim during the week, while I deliver multiple shiurim over shabbos.”
In addition, neginah is a centerpiece of this community, which is extremely close-knit. “Whether during the Yomim Nora’im (when they rent out the Renaissance ballroom to accommodate the crowd) or the Yamim Tovim, or Shalosh Seudos, the singing is elevated and heartwarming—bringing our hearts together to the Eibishter.”
On his preferred genre of songs on his albums, Rav Shloime explains: Whoever follows my singing knows that I really prefer songs with a message. These are the songs that I get the most feedback about; because music is the gateway into the soul, the way that strong message can really penetrate. To turn Jewish hearts Heavenward, to beseech and to trust Hashem, and to tether our hearts to Him.”
Being on the stage, by day, as well as by night—leading and administering a kehillah, as well as serving as the backdrop to so many of the simchos in the community—affords Rav Shloime a unique standpoint to observe the heartbeat of our community, and we ask him to reflect upon the recent challenges that Klal Yisroel around the world has been enduring.
“I will tell you what my Rebbe, the Amshinover Rebbe of Yerushalayim, has said when asked about the cause of Corona, and other tzaros: Everyone knows what they need to correct. We needn’t identify what others need to correct, rather to look deep inside our own hearts, and hear the wake up call.”
And whether from his shtender in shul, or on the music stage, Rav Shloime Taussig aims to help his fellow Yidden do just that.