The Klezmer Conservatory Band is the driving force in the revival of klezmer music, the jazzy Yiddish sound that originated in Eastern Europe and flourished in the U.S. in the early decades of this century. This infectious holiday album includes new and old music, and reminiscences by elder immigrants who tell stories of the joy and music of Chanukah.
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is vigorously entertaining and always instructive, with lively musical pieces interspersed with stories and explanations of Chanukah traditions and memories from a host of sources. And as the liner notes illustrate, the expression "oy!"--like klezmer music itself--can be "a lament, a protest, a cry of dismay, a reflex of delight." Here the Klezmer Conservatory preserves the singular beauty and breadth of Jewish culture and Yiddish expression associated with the festive holy days of Chanukah. Highly recommended. --Martin Keller