“A dank dir, mayn lebn” – Chilean classic “Gracias a la vida”, sung in Yiddish by Roman Grinberg
Maybe the most beautiful hymn to life ever written with no need of further introductions or explanations. It is a song telling everything in itself, and going directly inside the core of everyone of us.
It was written 1965 by Violeta Parra, who dedicated it to the object of her love disillusion, Gilbert Favre, just to thank life.
In 1966, the singer recorded the song in Santiago accompanied by her children, Ángel and Isabel.
The song was not much known until 1971, when the Argentinian singer Mercedes Sosa recorded it and helped make it widely known first in its country of origin, Chile, and then all over the world.
In 1974 the song was recorded by Joan Baez and became a kind of an anti-war hymn. It remains a concert staple of Baez’ to this day.
Gracias a la vida has been translated into 31 languages so far.
Roman Grinberg wrote the Yiddish version in 2020 during the COVID pandemic and performed it for the first time during his online concert for the international project: “Yiddish Song Step Forverts”.