Wednesday, February 28, 2007

10/28/07 Link Dump

Life-of-Rubin calls a spade a spade in "Is the New Miami Boys Choir CD False Advertising?"

The Town Crier has posted some pictures and is ripping MBD for public alchohol consumption at a recent concert.

Heichal Haneginah posts " Andy Statman- An Ahava Supreme".

Jameel has posted a YouTube clip promoting the upcoming Purim@ JBlogosphere. The Purim music in the clip is from "Purim Sameach."

Here's a NY Times article, "Shoot the Piano Player" about an elderly pianist who made a name for herself using other pianist's albums.

This JPost article "A Cohen by any other name," is about Yuval Cohen's debut album, "Freedom."

I had the pleasure of playing several gigs with Yuval years ago. In addition to being a very talented musician, he's a wonderfully sweet guy.

Here are Margot Leverett and the Klezmer Mountain Boys in action!

Zichron Menachem has posted a video clip, "There is a God," of a song by Yisrael Chaim (12) about his battle against cancer. The song was recorded between chemo sessions, a few days before his bar mitzva.

This past Sunday, Palestinian terrorists murdered Erez Levanon Z"L, a husband and father who was murded while praying. Erez was a musician/composer and you can hear one of his songs here. Lazer Beams has a beautiful picture of Erez Z'L walking Bat Ayin children to school with guitar accompaniment. He also has information about a fund to support the widow and orphans.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

2/22/07 Link Dump

Here's our craigslist item of the day. It comes in "grey mother of toilet seat." You could build a weird band around this thing. Or else, someone could buy it for Yossi Rosenberg.

Sing it, sister!

Chaptzem Blog! comments on the Aderet "CD rental" nonsense.He forsees a liability suit when someone is injured by a rental CD.

The J-Post writes about Yiddish nostalgia. It's Shira Be'tzibur in Yiddish!

Someone asked the Rabbi about the negative powers of music.

Finally, here's a link to The NY Jewish Week's coverage of the Klezmatics Grammy win. [/sarcasm] Their J-arts coverage is lacking, but they do deserve props for this eyewitness report of "Yeshiva Break" in Miami. Not music related, but important nonetheless.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

From the mailbag...

Ron B. writes:
I'm pleased to announce that, G-d willing, I will be performing a couple of original big band arrangements with the Lakewood Jazz Ensemble featuring drummer Dave Weckl at the 21st Annual Music Spectacular Jazz Festival on April 26th (23rd Day of the Omer! - there'll be a CD!).
You can find more info on his website.

I'm Haaretz, Ph.D. writes:
Hi, thanks for the link to my article on Shuckle. Just to set the record straight: I am not the one who coined the term. It's from the Forward article I linked to. Daniel Seliger created it. I've just taken it on as my mission to spread it, so to speak :) Sorry to hear you never took to "shiny shoe" -- I hope "shuckle" suits you better.
Today I'm rocking with "Frock Rock"!

Mordy Shinefield writes:
Article I did for about the use of Chabad Niggunim in non-religious Jewish music. Chasidic Tunes Inspire Rockers
The lead paragraph asserts that "recently, though, artists have been finding inspiration from a more mystical source - the niggunim of Chabad Lubavitch", and includes guitarist Tim Sparks as one of those artists. I don't believe there are any Chabad niggunim on Tim Sparks' Tzadik releases. A better Tzadik example of Chabad nigun influencing music might have been Ambarchi/Avenaim's '99 release, "The Alter Rebbe's Nigun".

I'm Haaretz, Ph.D. writes:
Hi, thanks for the link to my article on Shuckle. Just to set the record straight: I am not the one who coined the term. It's from the Forward article I linked to. Daniel Seliger created it. I've just taken it on as my mission to spread it, so to speak :) Sorry to hear you never took to "shiny shoe" -- I hope "shuckle" suits you better.
Today I'm rocking with "Frock Rock"!

Last, but not least, the following will be of interest to our European readers.

Dr Laoise Davidson of the Jewish Music Institute SOAS in London writes:
I often pop by your blogsite, being a fellow Jewish music enthusiast, and also working in this area for the Jewish Music Institute.

I was wondering if you would be interested in doing a Blog Feature on our Nu? Musik! workshops which start this coming Monday (26th Feb) in the University of London?

The workshops are for anyone who plays in a band or is forging their way as a solo artist in any of the following genres – Pop, Rock, Jazz, Funk, Latin, World Music, Punk, Reggae, Hip Hop, Dance, R&B, Folk, Klezmer, Ladino… who want to get into Jewish roots music and create their own fusions of Jewish music with their own preferred music styles. They are really about broadening audiences and participants in New Jewish Music, which I think relates to your blog site quite well…

The workshops are open to all age groups, backgrounds and instruments. Participants should have a basic knowledge of music.

Every Monday evening between 26th February and 26th March
from 7 to 9pm at SOAS – Room G60
Thornhaugh Street, London WC1H 0XG

There is more information about the workshop leaders and workshop subjects on our website –
Sounds like a neat concept.

2/20/06 Link Dump

Is it just me, or does the Gertner album art owe a nod to Matisyahu's graphic designer?

Jewess profiles singer/songwriter Beth Schafer. Schafer wrote one of the original anthems for the forthcoming Voices for Israel release featuring female JM artists.

I'm Haaretz, Ph.D. writes about a genre of Jewish music she's calling "Shuckle." The term "Shiny Shoe" doesn't really grab me. Essentially, I use it when I'm quoting someone.

Over at the Yahoo JM board, someone posted a negative review of this past Sunday's Ha'azinu concert and noted that "This event was not sold out, at least 400 empty seats."

Naturally, a new member appears to dispute the claim that it wasn't sold out. He writes: "Maybe some people didn't show, but the place was completely sold out because I couldn't even get more tickets." Anyone want to bet this poster was involved with producing/promoting this event?

This has happened before on the Yahoo JM board. Members post that a certain event was poorly attended. Then, a new member appears and posts a contradictory claim. I'm certain these "new members" are people with an interest, not just fans.

A point I made in an earlier post bears repeating.
The issue isn't even whether the organization nets money. It's whether the expense to income ratio is justifiable. So, for example, if Charity X produces an annual concert that raises one million dollars, but only nets $200,000 after expenses (musicians, featured entertainers, hall rental, sound companies, advertising, staffing, etc.), then to my mind the event is unjustifiable. Especially if most of the money raised is Tzedaka dollars, meaning it eats up money that people would otherwise have given to tzedaka.

If a donor is willing to give $100 to a charity and ups their donation to $200 to buy tickets to the charity's concert, then, if the charity nets anywhere less than $100 from that donation, the event was a waste of tzedaka money. Furthermore, even if they just break even or make an inconsequential additional amount, there is a strong argument to be made that the event was not worth holding.
I'm afraid it'll take a huge scandal to effect some change, but there are too many large concerts held too close together --relative to the size of the community-- for them all to be justified as tzedaka fundraisers.

The Forward celebrates the Klezmatics' Grammy win. They fail to mention that the Grammy voters obviously read our "Wonder Wheel" review.

Rokhl writes: "What do the Klezmatics and Milli Vanilli have in common?"

Matisyahu didn't win a Grammy. Naturally, because of anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism is also the reason these guys weren't even nominated.

LIFE-OF-RUBIN posts a Ta Shma video.

Teruah posts a YouTube clip of Nina Simone singing "Eretz Zavat Chalav."

Over at Jewschool... "An Invitation to Piyut". posts a "Blunt Bar Mitzvah Invitation".

It's Adar. Time for some Purim song lyrics!

Finally, here's some Joo-ish music. Here's their YouTube promo. Great stuff!

Monday, February 12, 2007

From the mailbag...

Someone with waaaaaaaay too much free time writes:
I just noticed something pretty stupid and careless at the new Srully W website - look at the source code. The site is contributing hits with every click to a "Yeshua ministries" page because the web person stupidly imported the BSD graphic from that site.
There's something incredibly ironic about a "Chassidic" singer lifting a "With the help of God" graphic from a Messianic Christian site.

Arkady forwards the following:
Hi folks,

Just in case you are not on this Jazz Promo Services List
...., I thought I'd forward this to you...





This is from Michael Brecker

JANUARY 13, 2007 -

Following a two and a half year battle with MDS and then leukemia, Michael
passed away.

In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be made to The Marrow Foundation's

Many lives have been saved as a result of those who joined the National
Marrow Donor Program at donor drives on behalf of Michael---and who were
perfectly matching donors for others in need. 

There is much work to do, and we ask you to please join us in this effort.
Thank you for all of your support.


Michael Brecker Memorial Tuesday, February 20thTown Hall 6:00-7:30pm

Tuesday, February 20th
Town Hall, NYC, USA
123 West 43rd Street
General Admission
Public Invited
Doors open at 5:15pm


Thank You!!! Please Spread the word!!!
We've urged people to get tested before, but it bears repeating.

E. writes:
I don't think murmurings of a rumored boycott of Aderet "perpetually leased" products are affecting sales of Shwekey's CD at the YU Seforim Sale one way or the other. In other news, I set up a lemonade stand outside and warned people that I was perpetually leasing them their respective cups of lemonade.
The CD rental policy is just embarrassing. The claim in the revised text that it's approved by all "preeminent poskim" is a bald-faced lie. That said, the alleged boycott advice attributed to Rabbi Belskey seems over the top too.

In a series of 36 emails sent between 12:46 and 1:07, Sidney Goldberg writes:
Write the music to these hip Jewish styled shows!

Click and you'll see I write up a storm: book and lyrics to 20 musicals. Six have been completed by some of the most accomplished composers (see bio) and are currently under consideration, seven more are currently being written.

One of the funniest musicals ever written about nutty, meshugeneh Jews. Abraham, fulfilling his covenant with G-d by circumcising himself. "Abraham's Cut," is a hysterical story about the last mohel, circumciser in the Bronx. The three candidates who have come to be circumcised are petrified when they meet the Mohel that turns out to be wearing very thick glasses, his hands shakes and says he like to drink bourbon before all his circumcisions.

"That Bestseller," is a funny story about how the Bible was supposedly written.

At the bottom of my web, write music to the books and lyrics to a musical Trilogy on Genesis, the Torah. (In the Beginning) Will become a classic.
201 567-6533
Sorry, we're going to pass on these.

Mazal Tov! Klezmatics' "Wonder Wheel" Wins Grammy

The Klezmatics have won a Grammy in the "Best Contemporary World Music Album" category for their "Wonder Wheel" Guthrie album.

We reviewed the album here.

The Forward wrote about the album this past week in "Where the Borscht Sounds Like the Sea". (Thanks, Marisa.)

Amazon has the album here:

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

2/7/07 Link Dump

Keith Wolzininger posts to the Yahoo JM group about his new Klezmer Podcast. His guests for the first show are David Krakauer and So-Called.

Treppenwitz posts a nice cello rental story.

FWQ notes a common mispronounciation in "Motzei Shabbos Zemiros".

Chabad Mont Pneimios has posted a video clip of Yerachmiel Begun and MBC's performance at the messianic Lubavitch event in Israel we blogged previously. Watching the clip, it's quite obvious that despite his caginess on JM in the AM, Begun knew exactly what he was participating in.

Here's Psycho Toddler on Kol Isha.

Meet Jtunes artist Dovi Small.

The Jerusalem Post reviews Rashanim's third disc, "Shalosh".

Here's a Brazilian Yiddish music blog,"YidishMusic!"

Monday, February 05, 2007

ZOG Infiltrates Kiryas Yoel

Based on a recent gig...

Five musicians to play elegant dinner music for your son's Sheva Brachos in a Satmar hall in Kiryas Joel, Monroe, NY: $3500

An additional one-man-band to play the post-bentching dancing: $750

The Russian string trio deciding to call a tune and playing a showpiece "Hungarian Dance style" medley of "Az Der Rebbe Elimelech" and "Hava Nagila": Priceless

"There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's MasterCard."

Friday, February 02, 2007

Rent! (Not the musical)

L-O-R shreds Aderet over their CD rental policy. Sarcasm, it's powerful stuff!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

More CD Rental Lunacy. If At First You Don't Succeed, Cry, Cry, Again!

Longtime reader "Y" writes:
The Shwekey rental agreement has been revised, it's even worse now. See attached file.


Rabbi Belsky, Rosh Hashiva Torah VeDos, told the bochurim of the yeshiva not to buy from Aderet music anymore because the whole rental agreement which was written up is "obscenely written and is not valid halachikly " This has been quoted first hand by more then one person who heard it directly from him.
This whole thing is just embarrassing!

Speaking of new CD's and embarrassing, another reader writes:
The new Ohad album thanks Yossi Green in the inside cover as follows:

To Yossi Green
For the inspiration the gaudiness and the pleasure of working with you.

Someone in Israel must have hit the wrong button during spell check…..