American Klezmer: Its Roots and Offshoots

American Klezmer: Its Roots and Offshoots

By: Mark Slobin (editor)Paperback

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Klezmer, the Yiddish word for a folk instrumental musician, has come to mean a person, a style, and a scene. This musical subculture came to the United States with the late-nineteenth-century Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe. Although it had declined in popularity by the middle of the twentieth century, this lively music is now enjoying recognition among music fans of all stripes. Today, klezmer flourishes in the United States and abroad in the world music and accompany Jewish celebrations. The outstanding essays collected in this volume investigate American klezmer: its roots, its evolution, and its spirited revitalization. The contributors to "American Klezmer" include every kind of authority on the subject - from academics to leading musicians - and they offer a wide range of perspectives on the musical, social, and cultural history of klezmer in American life. The first half of this volume concentrates on the early history of klezmer, using folkloric sources, records of early musicians unions, and interviews with the last of the immigrant musicians. The second part of the collection examines the klezmer "revival" that began in the 1970s. Several of these essays were written by the leaders of this movement, or draw on interviews with them, and give firsthand accounts of how klezmer is transmitted and how its practitioners maintain a balance between preservation and innovation.

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About Author

Mark Slobin is Professor of Music at Wesleyan University and author of several books on Jewish and Central European music, including Tenement Songs: Popular Music of the Jewish Immigrants (1992) and Exploring the Klezmer World (2000).


Introduction, Mark Slobin Part One: Roots 1. American Klezmer A Brief History Hankus Netsky 2. Klezmer-Loshn The Language of Jewish Folk Musicians Robert A. Rothstein 3. Di rusishe progresiv muzikal yunon no. 1 fun amerike The First Klezmer Union in America James B. Loeffler 4. The Klezmer in Jewish Philadelphia, 1915--70 Hankus Netsky 5. "All My Life a Musician" Ben Bazyler: A European Klezmer in America Michael Alpert 6. Bulgareasca/Bulgarish/Bulgar The Transformation of a Klezmer Dance Genre Walter Z. Feldman Part Two: Offshoots 7. Sounds of Sensibility Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett 8. Klezkamp and the Rise of Yiddish Cultural Literacy Henry Sapoznik 9. Newish, Not Jewish Reshaping Klezmer Musical Traditions Marion Jacobson 10. An Insider's View How We Traveled from Obscurity to the Klezmer Establishment in Twenty Years Frank London 11. Why We Do This Anyway Klezmer as Youth Subculture Alicia Svigals Works Cited Contributors Index

Product Details

  • publication date: 24/07/2002
  • ISBN13: 9780520227187
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 252
  • ID: 9780520227187
  • weight: 63
  • ISBN10: 0520227182

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