It is with great sadness that Matzav.com reports the passing of R’ Shmuel Borger z”l. He was approximately 70.
Shmuel was a videographer who was most well known for the choir, Amudei Shaish, that he led. As the group’s composer and choirmaster, Shmuel Borger was original, creative, and forward thinking.
Jewish music fans who were around in the ’70’s undoubtedly remember a watershed event called “The American Israeli Chassidic Song Festival.” Inspired by its Israeli counterpart, the AICSF was a competition that pitted tried and true performers from all walks of Jewish music life like Shlomo Carlebach, The Ruach Revival and Shlomo Haviv against newcomers like the Kochavim and even a new choral act with the oddly memorable name “Amudai Shaish.” More than a memorable name, the group was apparently memorable as well because they came in first, beating out Shlomo, Avshalom Katz (father of Eitan and Shlomo), Shelly Lang and others with the performance of a song called “Boruch Haboh.”
Using this win as a springboard, the song’s composer and group’s choirmaster—Shmuel Borger, together with his co-choirmaster and producer Avrohom Sherman, went immediately to work on a full-fledged debut album—which was unique in more ways than one.
Amudai Shaish became the musical incubator that gave Jewish music fans the debuts of Shloime Dachs, Mendy Wald and Srully Williger— in addition to Meir Sherman, Rivie Schwebel, Ali Scharf and others.
The group that got its name when Sherman’s father realized that there were six founding members ended its highly successful run after 7 albums.
R’ Shmuel also served, for several years, as the assistant principal at Yeshiva Torah Vodaas Elementary School in the late 1970s.
Shmuel was predeceased by his son, Motty.
The levayah was held today at Shomrei Hadas Chapels in Boro Park.
Yehi zichro boruch.