Saturday, April 3, 2010

A Wild Night in Odessa

Klezmer music has long been a sanctuary for off-the-cuff tuba playing, so this compendium needs to include my favorite klezmer ensemble, The Klezmorim (a name meaning, simply 'musicians' in Yiddish). The Klezmorim has had a number of tuba players involved with the group since forming in 1975, but none more prominently than Donald Thornton (who plays a beautiful solo doina on the album Metropolis). Mr. Thornton, interestingly enough, has extensive experience in the worlds of classical and academic music as well. Something tells me that playing in The Klezmorim is equally, if not more rewarding. Abi gezundt! Don't be a meshuggah; check out the band.

Additionally, ABEL's own John "Professor Mofo" Manning can be heard performing with Iowa's premier klezmer ensemble the Java Jews. As you might have guessed from their c. 1996 website, the Java Jews aren't your typical schlemiels. John, wonderful goy that he is, previously appeared with the Shirim Klezmer Orchestra and Naftule's Dream.

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