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Yiddish Blues


F10163   [8595017416323]   released 3/2008 (original recording 1996)

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Helena ROTHOVÁ: piano, percussion
Tereza REJŠKOVÁ: violin
Michal KOSTIUK: clarinet, recorder
Ruben LANG: violin
Martin VYHNÁLEK: acoustic guitar
Tomáš BEDRNÍK: bassoon

Klezmerim in 1996The word KLEZMER means the ability of all and every human being to express themselves through song. We can say that we were all born with this natural ability “to be klezmer”. A more accurate translation of “klezmer” is “a song played on a musical instrument”. At the same time the musicians playing these “songs” started to call themselves “klezmer”. Today the term refers to a whole musical genre. This genre, which has its origins in Jewish communities from eastern Europe, has come to us via Brooklyn. Thanks to migration, the opening of “shtetls” (Jewish townlets) and technological advances, the ancient Jewish elements started to absorb other than local musical idioms and other genres – mainly musicals, salon music, American ragtime, pop songs and last but not least also oriental music. This gave rise to the second and third klezmer generations.
     I am not sure to which generation the PRAGUE KLEZMERIM belong because the group’s members are the children of other klezmer children. The very existence of the group, however, bears evidence of the viability and perhaps also the indestructibility of this music. Spiritual values have survived in man, despite generational gaps and the threat of physical extermination.
     In 1993 I invited six young musicians (then aged 11-17) to join our Prague based MISHPAHA choir. Soon I started arranging music for the different instruments they play. Today they are all secondary school and university students and most arrangements are the work of my daughter, Helena. The group under the name KLEZMERIM first featured on the MISHPAHA II CD. Since then the group has performed regularly both at home and abroad. They all feel klezmer in the truest sense of the word, their musical creation being a source of joy for each of them.

Hana Rothová, 1996

Further album by Prague Klezmerim:

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