Commentary by Itzik Gottesman, Ph.D.:
Ver es vil kayn tate-mame folgn (Whoever Does Not Listen to Their Parents) is a lyric love song performed by Lifshe Schaechter Widman (LSW) for this recording by Leybl Kahn, made in the Bronx in 1954. So far, I can find no other versions of the whole song in printed collections.
It seems LSW remembered the final fourth verse a little later so the song is presented on two audio files – the first three verses are on one audio file and the final verse on a second audio file. The song is unusual in that the melody changes for just the last verse.
As usual on this blog, the transliteration in the English alphabet reflects more accurately the singer’s dialect than the transcription in Yiddish that follows, which is done in standard Yiddish.
Ver es vil kayn tate-mame folgn.
Deym kimt dekh oys azoy tsi geyn.
Mayn mame hot mir geheysn shlufn geyn leygn.
Hob ekh getin in drosn shteyn.
Zenen derkhgegangen tsvey sheyne yingelekh.
In ekh bin mir geshtanen azoy betribt.
Az s’iz eynem bashert tsuris tsi ladn.
Hob ekh mekh in eynem farlibt.
Bay mayn mamen bin ekh eyn un eyntsik kind
Un mayn mame hot mekh zeyer lib.
Zeyt zhet mir tsi poyln bay mayn mame
Zi zol im lozn arayn in shtib.
From second file – final verse.
Di mame zogt shoyn yo.
Ober mayn tate zogt dekh neyn.
Zeyt zhet mir tsi poyln bay mayn tatn
Er zol meygn in shtib arayngeyn.
Whoever does not listen to their parents –
That is how it goes.
My mother told me to go to sleep
but I went outside to stand.
Then two handsome boys went by,
and i was standing there so sullenly.
If it’s your fortune to have troubles –
I fell in love with one of them.
I am my mother’s one and only child,
and my mother loves me very much.
So please help me convince my mother
to let him into the house.
My mother says “yes”.
But my father says “no”.
So please help me convince my father,
he should allow him to come into the house.