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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 6, 2005 /26 Adar II, 5765

Old, new, borrowed... and jazzy

By Paul Wieder

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Nine new Klezmer CDs


http://www.jewishworldreview.com | The Jewish wedding music known as Klezmer has traveled, evolved and interacted with many other genres without losing its distinctive Jewish "ta'am," or flavor. Many new releases explore klezmer's ongoing journey:


Yikhes: Early Klezmer Recordings (1911-1913) "Yikhes" means "lineage." And here is an hour's worth of yikhes, tracing the journey klezmer and its practitioners made from the Old Country to the New World. A third of the 18 tracks feature Naftule Brandwein's incomparable clarinet; the rest includes luminaries from Abe Schwartz to Dave Tarras. The recording quality is surprisingly solid, and the music still sounds innovative nearly a century later.


Sandra Layman: Little Blackbird The subtitle illustrates the variety offered here: "Klezmer, Romanian, Greek, Turkish, and Hungarian music." Layman's quartet- her sprightly violin, two guitars, and a quick-witted cimbalom- ranges through 35 live songs and medleys. Fewer than half of the songs are klezmer or Chasidic in origin, but placing them in the context of their neighboring musics is enjoyably educational. It is especially interesting is to hear how the modes of Asia Minor have affected klezmer, often thought of as primarily Eastern European.

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The Burning Bush: Music of the Old Jewish World Britain's leading klezmer ensemble also dabbles in those forms outside klezmer that inform it. In order to recreate the music of Turkey, Morocco, and Greece, they incorporate both klezmer and Mizrachi instruments. Violinist Lucie Skeaping sings the ancient words- in Yiddish, Hebrew, Turkish, and English- adroitly altering her phrasing to the style in question. The playing throughout is spirited, and the production is crystalline.


Veretski Pass A klezmer supergroup of sorts. Bassist Stuart Brotman, whose background is in international folk, anchors Brave Old World. Joshua Horowitz's cimbalom is a cornerstone of his old-school klez band Budowitz, but he also taught jazz alongside Stan Getz. And Cookie Segelstein is a classical violinist who has played with big-time klezmer outfits. Together, they make "Traditional East European Jewish Music" that is as head-spinning as Mozart and gut-punching as MC5. This is an intellectual and emotional workout that demands and deserves attention. The liner notes contain photos, ruminations, and chicken recipes.


Introducing Sukke Clarinet, bass, accordion... keep it simple as a succah, a shelter designed for wandering tribes. This is the philosophy of Sukke, which also unites three major klezmer players, although this time from Britain, Germany, and the Netherlands. Placing standards alongside new Yiddish song-poems, they weave a sound as delicate and elegant as a spider web... and as hard to leave.


Golem: Homesick Songs Klezmer music, garage-rock attitude. Golem is six people who have no business being this talented this young. Here, they present a dozen songs mostly named for places in the Old Country: Belz, Zlatopol, Odessa... which they long for with a twisted nostalgia. The characters in the tunes prefer the deep passions, as bitter as they were sweet, of the homeland's shtetls and fields to the unending drudgery of the "Goldena Medina's" slums and sweatshops. In one track, the sweet-faced "Greener Cousin" loses her bloom, damning her new land and its false promises. At least Golem enjoys wallowing in all the delicious angst.


Juez: Shemspeed Alt Shul In Europe, "Alt" meant "old," and here it is short for "alternative." Both senses of the word come into play for this excursion of "breakbeat klezmer jazz." Juez takes klezmer and runs it through a hard-jazz processor. They use a trumpet and sax where most klezmer bands use a violin and clarinet, the two horns twining like vines on a chain-link fence. The electric bass sometimes decides that rock or funk is what is called for, and the drummer tries- but only casually- to hold it all together.


Margot Leverett and the Klezmer Mountain Boys "Jew-grass" fans-- whether pre- or post "O Brother, Where Out Thou?"-- will enjoy traveling this bridge between the Carpathians and the Ozarks. Most of the tracks are klezmer, with a sprinkling of bluegrass, and a few medleys (one called "Lonesome Fiddle Blues & Sid's Bulgars") in which one style slides seamlessly into the other. Clarinetist Leverett was a founder of the Klezmatics; bandmate Frank London sits in, as does Brave Old World's Michael Alpert. The sound is danceable, upbeat and endlessly surprising.


Celebrate Series: Celebrate Klezmer The latest in the endless run of the Celebrate Series compilations, this one offers a klemer-copia of some of the finest acts in the klezmer revival: The Kelzmatics, the Klezmer Conservatory Band, the Chicago Klezmer Ensemble, and (gotta love the name) The Klez Dispensers. Veretski Pass is here, too. For this outing, producer Craig Taubman hands the reins to some experts, Frank London and Lorin Sklamberg. This is probably the best one-disc klezmer introduction since Itzhak Perlman's "In the Fiddler's House."


Klezmer, which dates back more than a century and a half, has the gravitas of all that is ancient. But in the hands of musicians both studious and playful, it never grows old.

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JWR contributor Paul Wieder is a public relations associate at the Jewish United Fund and a columnist for JUF News. Contact the author or the magazine by either clicking here, or calling (312) 444-2853.

© 2004, Paul Wieder