MP3 Geoff Berner - Klezmer Mongrels
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11 MP3 Songs in this album (41:50) !
Related styles: WORLD: Klezmer, WORLD: Gypsy
People who are interested in Tom Waits Elvis Costello Leonard Cohen should consider this download.
Geoff Berner Releases "Klezmer Mongrels", Crowning Achievement of Klezmer Punk Trilogy
âThe Avenging Angel of klezmerââ Canada âs Globe and Mail
âGeoff Berner might be klezmerâs saviour.ââNOW Magazine.
"5/6" Oslo Dagvisen
"Cherish him, cherish him, for there really is no one
like him. Fantastic."--Billy Bragg
Geoff Berner's latest album, âKlezmer Mongrelsâ released October 24 on the 9pm label in Europe, and January -- 2009 in Canada , is the ultimate expression of his aggressive kind of klezmer. It's a klezmer punk folk dance album about mixed-breeds of all kinds.
This is the third album of his "Whiskey Rabbi" trilogy, all recorded with the rough sound of blaring accordion, the virtuosic, scraping fiddle of Diona Davies, and the thumping, insistent rhythm of Wayne Adams' percussion.
This trilogy declares that the 'klezmer revival' is over. There's no need to revive. Klezmer is alive and infectious, and voracious, and mutating again. The evidence is there in the international radical klezmer scene that's sprung up in the last few years, with artists like Berner, Montreal's Socalled, Daniel Kahn in Berlin, Klezmic Zirkus in Belgium, Michael Winograd's band Jewish Princess in NYC, and literally scores more popping up in the wake of bands like these.
âToday there's a cultural battle going on between the boring forces of purity, fundamentalism and monoculture, and the fun forces of mixed-up, messed-up diversity. This album is a celebration of the triumph of mixed-up fun."
"'Whiskey Rabbi' was mainly about booze, 'Wedding Dance of the Widow Bride' was mostly about women, and 'Klezmer Mongrels' is about the natural consequences of combining the two."
"I believe in this approach, because at the height of its powers, this music, the folk music of Eastern European Jews, was a constantly changing brew of Turkish music, sacred Jewish music, Tango, jazz, and the music of whatever country the Jews were living in at the time."
Berner's message is evident in songs like "Half German Girlfriend", "Luck in Exile", and the ironic "Authentic Klezmer Wedding Band". The music and lyrics are a raw assault on purity that will make listeners, laugh, bang their heads, cry, and feel absurd, all at the same time.
Berner began his klezmer journey with a research trip: In 2004, the trio of Berner, Diona Davies (violin) and Wayne Adams (percussion) travelled to rural Romania to investigate the roots of the music with their guide and guru, Bob Cohen, leader of Budapest band Di Naye Kapelye. They returned with a deeper understanding of the culture, and quite a few stories to tell.
Now, after courting Olympic controversy at the Winnipeg Folk Festival, numerous international tours, festival appearances, airplay on national radio in 7 countries, and slots on tour with artists such as Billy Bragg, Kaizers Orchestra, Balkan Beat Box and the Be Good Tanyas (who covered his song "Light Enough to Travel", selling over 100,000 copies), he's garnered critical acclaim and a fast-growing cult following for his sharp songwriting and cabaret performance style.
"It was weird on this last tour, to play places like Amsterdam , Berlin , even Nuremberg , and have people I'd never seen before singing along, not just to the choruses, but the verses. Something strange is happening out there. But it's good."
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