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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer: The Big Picture Featuring David Krakauer

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It should come as no surprise that jazz musicians often spin some newfangled slants on compositions culled from Broadway theatrics and film. Other than renowned clarinetist David Krakauer's solo excursions for various record labels, his longtime affiliation with composer, saxophonist John Zorn, for a host of jazz- klezmer, and outside-the-box undertakings, bring quite a bit to the proverbial table. With dashes of New York City downtown-like risk- taking episodes, Jewish folk, jazz, rock and Americana, amid Krakauer's animated, vibrato-laden notes and shuddering expressionism, this agenda intimates a nouveau flavor, when correlating the old wine in new bottles adage. The Big ...

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Jazz Quanta: February

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February's Jazz Quanta is a beautifully mixed bag of blues, jazz instrumental and classical. There is never a dull moment. Renee' and the Walkaways--The Walkaway Sessions (Self Produced, 2013). Vocalist Renee' Cheek heads up the piquant gumbo talent of her very own band, the Walkaways. The Walkaway Sessions is a Louisiana grassroots affair produced by David Hyde, who also provides bass playing. The music is a rich roux drawing equally from the blues, country, zydeco, Tex-Mex and jazz...but make it heavy on the country. Originals “No Regrets," “Poor Cold Heart" and “I Don't Need You" are the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer: Bubbemeises: Lies My Gramma Told Me

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Composer/klezmer and classical clarinetist David Krakauer has accrued a nice string of releases over the last five years, working with the under-distributed French Label Bleu imprint. 2001's A Hot One went toward the jazzy end of klez and The Twelve Tribes, from the following year, punched it up with a bit of a rock edge. But the surprise came in 2004, when he augmented his long-standing Klezmer Madness! band to include jazz guitar, accordion and sampler. The impact of the live record was considerable, but this followup, Bubbemeises, is a more finely honed stab at the same formula.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer & Socalled with Klezmer Madness!: Bubbemeises: Lies My Gramma Told Me

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This snappy little set combines some funky klezmer jazz with an intelligent electronic/hip-hop perspective. Does that sentence get your blood racing? It should, because there are a hell of a lot of amazing things being done in klezmer music these days, from traditional stuff to the avant-est of the avant-garde. Here, clarinetist David Krakauer and his amazing Klezmer Madness! band go nuts in a collaboration with Jewish rapper/producer Socalled to yield one of the nicest, tightest, weirdest things of the year.

Even on a purely technical level, the way Klezmer Madness! does its thang is lovable. Drummer Michael Sarin thumps ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer & Socalled with Klezmer Madness!: Bubbemeises: Lies My Gramma Told Me

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Clarinet master David Krakauer is one of the original, free-minded heroes of the new klezmer revival, a great and daring instrumentalist who keeps expanding his musical language. Bubbemeises: Lies My Gramma Told Me, a collaboration between Canadian DJ and sampler man Josh Goldin, aka Socalled, and Krakauer's trusty and impeccable unit, Klezmer Madness!, retains the festive and merry mood of klezmer music but adds a hot mix of jazz, funk, rock, and hip-hop. This infectious and fun-filled brew is so rewarding that you wish for more, much more.

Socalled, who first joined Klezmer Madness! on Krakauer Live in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer/Various: Music from the Winery

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During a time when Jewish music became an integral part of the downtown NYC and world music scenes, clarinetist David Krakauer's Sunday klezmer brunch at Lower East Side's Tonic enabled multiple generations to rediscover their musical roots in the neighborhood where their forefathers discovered America. This offering chronicles those live performances, and whether it was a traditional “Chusidl" spiced up by the youthful Klezminors, Charm City Klezmer's fresh take on Yiddish theatre, or Metropolitan Klezmer's classic “doina" build into an all out Hasidic free for all, Sundays at Tonic accented a pride in the music's origins, combined with an excitement ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer: Krakauer Live In Krakow

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Listening to this live klezmer recording reminds me of my mother sending me off to elementary school wearing green on Saint Patrick’s Day. She would say, “On Saint Patrick’s Day everyone is Irish.” I remember asking, “even Frank Sinatra?”

“Yes,” she would reply, “Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, and even Annette Funicello.”

You see, David Krakauer reminds us that klezmer music is jazz or at least that jazz was born from that New Orleans cauldron of blues, European, and African music. That’s why the klezmer revival fits so well with the diversity that is new jazz. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer: Live in Krakow

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The world of MTV isn't klezmer clarinetist David Krakauer's milieu, but if it were, a video for “Table Pounding," the opening track of Live in Krakow, might include a scene of four black-clad, bearded, traditional-looking Jewish gents cruising the streets of Krakow in a low-riding car. This car is is equipped with a muscular sound system that transmits the songs sampled beat, shaking the traffic lights as they roll along, giving the store front windows a seismic shiver as well. Live in Krakow features a pared-down version of Krakauer's Klezmer Madness! band, with electric guitar, accordion, bass and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer's Klezmer Madness!: The Twelve Tribes

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David Krakauer seeks to expand the boundaries of klezmer music by going into the past and navigating his way through a current stream. To do this successfully, particularly where traditional music comes in, the structure should be pliable enough to be fleshed out with getting into a sag. The ones Krakauer has chosen lend themselves to his ministrations and that of his band with an ease that gives them enough relevance in the constant reshaping of what gets tucked under the umbrella of jazz.

The blend gives the album a welcome balance. Tradition kicks into high gear ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer's Klezmer Madness!: The Twelve Tribes

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Whoa, so this is klezmer! A freewheeling clarinet wailing in front of a hard rock beat, dueling it out with a screaming electric guitar. That's “Tribe Number Thirteen," the opening cut on David Krakauer's new neo-klezmer CD, The Twelve Tribes. A wild, wild ride.Krakauer started his career as a classical musician, studying at Julliard; but in the '80s, klezmer called. Klezmer is the often frenetic, highly improvised Eastern European Jewish folk music that came to this country with the immigrants in the early part of the twentieth century. The Twelve Tribes represents Krakauer's fourth recorded foray into klezmer, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

David Krakauer's Klezmer Madness: The Twelve Tribes

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The packaging of the new Klezmer Madness CD, The Twelve Tribes, combines the ancient symbols for each of the twelve tribes of Israel with a World Trade Center intact view of downtown New York City. The CD itself is also a juxtaposition of Jewish themes, klezmer influence and NYC downtown jazz with rock, blues, Latin and even techno. The result is an album that is a delight to listen to while at times challenging the listener to redefine their views of both klezmer and jazz.

The title piece kicks the album off with a solid bass and drum ...



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