An early version of Reb Levik’s famous “Hakofos Niggun” attributed to the Baal Shem Tov’s student R’ Mordechai of Zaslov has been recorded from old notes.
By Anash.org writer
Every chossid is well familiar with the famous “Hakofos Niggun” of Harav Levi Yitzchok, the Rebbe’s father. The niggun is sung by chassidim at many happy occasions, and of course at hakafos.
The niggun as we have it in Sefer Hanigunim was recorded by R’ Pinyeh Althoiz as he heard from Reb Levik. The Rebbe’s father shared a tradition that this niggun was sung at the Alter Rebbe’s hakafos.
But apparently, this niggun has an even earlier source. A variation of the niggun is attributed to R’ Mordechai of Zaslov, a student of the Baal Shem Tov and a chazzan in the town of Zaslov. R’ Mordechai, a tzaddik and a close friend of other famous talmidim of the Baal Shem Tov, would sing Shoshanas Yaakov on Purim to this tune.
The niggun, recorded by Chazan Moti Boyer, has some noticeable differences to the niggun as we know it.
R’ Mordechai of Zaslov’s nigun: