Klezmer like a fish in water

I love Kelzmer clarinet. This guy has such physical ease, grace, facility on the instrument. Makes me want to dance. How about you? Anyone know who it is? I don't read Hebrew.

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10 comments for “Klezmer like a fish in water

  1. January 15, 2010 at

    If you like this style of playing you might also like this clip of the 'Klezmer All Star Clarinet Gang' with David Orlowski, Helmut Eisel and co – I think this is an unusual but amazingly effective combination of instruments (a mixture of German and French system clarinets + mandolin and double bass) with some wonderfully evocative and expressive playing. – I particularly love how Helmut manages the growling, note bending/glissandi etc. Enjoy:)


    • January 16, 2010 at

      Loved the vid link. Thanks. Who is Helmut, the younger one who starts, or the heavier guy on the right? I like the first. I like how airy his sound is to get that haunting piano.

  2. January 13, 2010 at

    That is a really nice melody. I wasn't aware of it before so thanks for bringing it to my attention. Feidman has lots of great songs on his CDs so you can't really go wrong there. I'm pretty sure you can find sheet music for a lot of them as well.


  3. January 12, 2010 at

    Here is more. It looks like the group might be named "i. zohar"


    • January 12, 2010 at

      Yes, we figured out his name is Israel Zohar. I just love the clarinet's virtuosic versatility!!

  4. yogahz
    January 12, 2010 at

    I sounds like he's laughing through the instrument – how joyful!

    • January 12, 2010 at

      Oh yes, those emotional sounds are typical of great Klemzer players, especially Giora Feidman. They weep, laugh, giggle, squeal.

  5. January 12, 2010 at

    Hi David – The Hebrew just says "klezmer" in a few different spellings and then Klezmer Festival – Tzfat (the city in northern Israel). Every year there's a big music festival there. I'm not sure about his name but it may be Israel Zohar – which he actually didn't write in Hebrew 🙂 It's definitely some great playing though. I've been playing klezmer for quite a while now and it's always nice to hear something like this.

    • January 12, 2010 at

      Hey Adam. Thanks for stopping by. I look forward to your writing on your new blog.

      I saw the English name in the video title, and looked up Zohar, and it means Splendor or Radiance. So I wasn't sure if it was his name or what. His first name, Israel, was not listed, only the first letter. Thanks for finding it. A search showed his name and several recordings.

      His articulation is so clean, light and fast. I wonder if he's doing some kind of double tonguing.

      On another Klezmer note, I love the style, and was looking for some popular melodies to possibly include in my future album of clarinet songs. I came up with \”Give us Peace\”, a nice title, and lovely melody. Do you know it?


      • January 13, 2010 at

        Hi David – Thanks for the reply. I hope you do drop by my site sometime Hopefully I'll put up the first real post soon. 🙂 Yeah the articulation is tremendous. It's been one of the things I've had to work hardest on.

        About the melodies – I'm not exactly sure which melody you're referring to. Could be a translation problem. There're are at least two melodies to a song called "Oseh Shalom" which means "He who makes peace" and there's another based on "Sim Shalom" (Grant Peace). They're not really klezmer melodies though. They actually come from the weekly prayer service. However you could definitely PLAY them in a klezmer style. For example Golijov uses the melody to "Avinu Malkenu" (Our Father, Our King) in the first mvt of The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind in this way.

        For other songs in the same vein, you might want to look into the recordings of people like Debbie Friedman, or Craig Taubman. You might also enjoy the melodies of R. Shlomo Carlebach. His melodies are especially popular and well recognized across a wide audience. For other melodies that are more "traditional klezmer" you might want to look at Henry Sapoznik's "Compleat Klezmer". It's a great resource and I think it comes with a CD of all the songs. Sorry if I went on a bit about this. It's one of my favorite topics.

        Take care,

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