Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Remembering Ira Silber Z"L cont...

Arkady writes:
GREAT site... Long overdue... A great contribution...
I want to publicly thank David Bogner for telling me about this site...
Hopefully, David turns out to be right, i.e. that the Mr. Incognito, who runs this site, won't edit anything out from my post....
This is what I wrote when trying to pass on the word about Ira's passing
Ira was VERY supportive to me in my early days in the Jewish music. He was willing to have fun with the music -- I think it was from Ira that I first heard Db chord instead of F major for when the Kala would walk in:)... And the harmonic and rhythmic fun didn't stop there:)...
Ira gave me extra freedom to experiment on the bandstand -- chorus, delay pedals, wireless mic, jumping around. Those Ruach gigs, with Shmoo, and Dov Levine etc. did have a LOT of Ruach!
Seeing audiences reactions, and my enthusiasm, one day Ira said -- why don't you lead the band, and so I did. Having Ira behind me was a great training, because he always pointed out, in a older brotherly fashion, what worked and what didn't. My nickname for Ira was -- Papa! He liked me calling him "papa"...
Well, in retrospect, with all his supportive WARMTH, and Teddy Bear ways, that nickname seems to fit even better now!!!
Ira will definitely be missed... but not forgotten!
Hey guys,
This was SOME funeral for Ira ... It was like attending Grammy's... minus glitz... It was who's who, and PACKED! ... I just wish it was for a happier reason...
It seems like another lifetime ago there was a streak of years where Neshoma, and Negina had their annual office parties... Ira's funeral brought those memories back...
At those office parties, it was so refreshing to see the musicians outside of tuxedos, with their wives etc... We had more than five minutes breaks to hang out... There were slide shows, videos... lot's of laughter, jokes, food..., gifts -- fun!!!!!!!!
Even though that this "Hasidic" music scene (boy, that word "Hasidic" always sounded so stupid, to me) was always competitive, I was among those who were invited to both Neshoma, and Negina office parties, and so were Ira, Shmoo,
Dov and quite a few others... It was nice to see all the music biz unpleasantries set aside for one night, where the emphasis was on good vibe that allowed our "other sides", our HUMANITY to peak through, even if it was only for a minute or two:)...
Yes, Ira's funeral brought those memories back... So many familiar faces, after all these years... I was just wondering -- is this how we all going to
be meeting from now on... at funerals?!
Yes, it's a new century, Internet, emails and all, but ... if we all are going to get together once in a while -- why does it have to be at FUNERAL?!?!
Whether it's sports, Hollywood, politics etc. it seems like each of those industries sets aside an occasion once a year where people just hang out, laugh, and then they go back to competing... fairly or unfairly:)...
Ira's funeral brought so many of us together on a sunny, cold, windy, Monday morning, at the threshold of Spring... It reminded all of us of our mortality, sins, imperfections, fragility... and it re-emphasized, if nothing else, one thing -- the fact that we chose music as our path in life...
As the funeral service ended, there we were on that cold, windy, sunny corner in Borough Park... Nobody was rushing home, as musicians often do after another night in the music industry... There were hugs, handshakes, and the remarks like "hopefully under happier occasions... next time...". On that we all agree... Then, as that Brooklyn corner eventually cleared up,
and there were only a few musicians left... talking... one teary eye colleague mentioned a very sentimental, but very accurate "keyword" -- COMMUNITY!!! That word COMMUNITY definitely caught my ear! Yes, this "Hasidic scene" undeniably has that COMMUNITY factor to it... Sadly, funerals are more likely to remind us of that, and, on a much larger scale,
we all lived though 9/11...
Hopefully our busy lives won't flush away this COMMUNITY VIBE that we all saw at Ira's funeral...
Hopefully there won't be any more 9/11's to teach us that precious COMMUNITY LESSON:)
Hopefully we all are strong enough to avoid one of the biggest hazards in life, and particularly in our industry -- FOOD!!! Yes, those smorgs etc. can be fun, but.... :)
From the bottom of my heart, I want to wish yall, and your loved ones, if nothing else, HEALTH, LOVE and PEACE!!!
And, being partial to poetry, I'll sum this up with the lyrics to the song made famous by Al Jolson --
Life is not a highway strewn with flowers,
Still it holds a goodly share of bliss,
When the sun gives way to April showers,
Here is the point you should never miss.
Though April showers may come your way,
They bring the flowers that bloom in May.
So if it's raining, have no regrets,
Because it isn't raining rain, you know, (It's raining violets,)
And where you see clouds upon the hills,
You soon will see crowds of daffodils,
So keep on looking for a blue bird, And list'ning for his song,
Whenever April showers come along.
And where you see clouds upon the hills,
You soon will see crowds of daffodils,
So keep on looking for a blue bird, And list'ning for his song,
Whenever April showers come along.
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