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Oy to the World


Price: $14.98 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Audio CD, October 12, 1999
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 12, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Libman Music
  • ASIN: B00000FXN2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,818 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Deck The Halls
2. We Three Kings Of Orient Are
3. Joy To The World
4. LIttle Drummer Boy
5. Carol Of The Bells
6. Santa Gey Gezunderheit (Santa Go In Good Health)
7. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
8. Jingle Bells
9. Good King Wenceslas
10. Away In A Manger

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Oy to the World! is an unrepentant collection of traditional carols, hymns, and Christmas high jinks played in the rousing, Jewish klezmer tradition. Talk about worlds colliding, this set throws its considerable, klezmetric weight around, turning the real "Joy to the World" into a dramatic, jazzy piece that swings and romps. With a few witty musical asides sprinkled into select songs among the 10 tracks, the Klezmonauts' only fault is that they may be too hip for the holiday party. Guaranteed either to send goyim fleeing from the room or your Yiddish grandmother rushing into the room to see what's the matter. In any event, it's fun, funny, and as effective as a shot of Jägermeister and just as unkosher. --Martin Keller

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 53 customer reviews
An AWESOME twist on traditional Christmas tunes!
Erin Kaplan
Would highly recommend for those with eclectic tastes in holiday music.
K. Ward
This year I found myself without a copy so had to get it again!
N. Cox

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Joe Ekaitis on November 2, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Ah, Christmas music.

It's been rocked, rolled, swinged, switched-on, bluesed, jazzed, (Mannheim) Steamrollered, Top-Fortied and Elvised within an inch of a fruitcake's life and still comes back for more. What could possibly be left after The New Christy Minstrels and the Ray Conniff Singers have had their turn at the Wassail bowl?

Enter The Klezmonauts with the answer: "OY to the World! A Klezmer Christmas."

Yeah, you hoid, uh, heard me right. Klezmer, the Jewish take on the free-form instrumentation of Dixieland with a flavor that's distinctively Kosher, not Cajun.

Paul Libman heads up a band of not-so-meshuga merry makers who pull it all together with charm and an appropriately light touch. The Klezmonauts include a few names better known for their appearances on other Christmas and non-seasonal albums, like Mannheim Steamroller violinist Arnie Roth. Does Chip Davis know about this?

Lest you think "OY to the World" is just Christmas carols with a few hyperkinetic clarinet riffs, a violin, an accordion and a drummer, The Klezmonauts throw in a few surprises, like a mini tribute to Dick Dale and his surf guitar, a few bars from the theme to "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly" and an original tune about Saint Nick called "Santa Gey Gezunderheit (Santa, Go in Good Health)". I won't tell you where they pop up. Just keep an ear peeled and DON'T sip egg nog while listening. You might spray everyone else in the room.

At barely 29 minutes in length, the album might seem short but Paul Libman knows when to leave 'em wanting more. Maybe he will or maybe he won't record a sequel to this 1998 release but like a favorite movie you've bought on DVD, "OY to the World!" contains moments you anticipate in repeated listenings.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By rabbicdj on December 23, 1998
Format: Audio CD
Such a nice song collection; such a nice package! Great gift, great musicianship BUT NOT ENOUGH!!!! 5 stars otherwise. You charged full price, give us full value. Gevalt! Just when I was tuning in, it was over!!! MORE!!! It will be well worth everyone's investment. 28 1/2 minutes!!?? Give us a break!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 25, 2000
Format: Audio CD
OK, you're probably thinking that there can't be klezmer Christmas songs, but the Klezmonauts did it. As their liner notes say "The clash of seemingly incongruous forces can produce surprising and, sometimes brilliant results." From the Yiddish rendition of "Jingle Bells" to the surf-influenced "Little Drummer Boy" to the little bursts of Ennio Morricone in "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen," this CD is wonderful! Of course fans of Klezmer and people who like fast, fun songs will like this, but so will some fans of Ska (like the Blue Meanies, who have delved into Klezmer in the past), which sometimes sounds a bit klezmer-ish.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 20, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This is such a great CD!! The songs have excellent arrangements, with top notch vocal and instrumental performances. It's so much fun to listen to! A definite holiday must for all :)
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By William A. Bussiere on January 9, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Save for the Messianic believers, of course Jews don't celebrate Christmas. Still in our American culture, Jews have always had a connection to it. Irving Berlin wrote "WHITE CHRISTMAS". A few years ago, Neil Diamond recorded a very well received Christmas CD. There are many such stories to tell.

Here, the idea of using the mesmerizing, yet festive style of Klezmer music is used to offer a whole new way for all of us to enjoy our Christmas favorites. "DECK THE HALLS" for example literally becomes hypnotically danceable without sounding the least bit disrespectful to the solemnity of the song or the Holiday.

There are parts where the musicians drifted into silliness. If one listens carefully, some of guitar work and accompanying drums become reminiscent of the 60's hit, "WIPEOUT" by the Safaris. While this takes away from what seemed to be the true mission of this CD, the musicians are so proficient and energetic that we can forgive the few places where they got a bit carried away.

It's been ten years since this "OY TO THE WORLD" CD was released, and I'm shocked at how few people know about it. For anyone who loves Christmas music, this is a must have to play for your Christmas parties when the season comes around again. If the Klezmonauts are reading this, it's been a decade! Think about going back into the studio because there are many more Christmas songs that await your treatment. But please stick to the mission and put your surfing and other unrelated tracks on a separate CD.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 5, 2001
Format: Audio CD
This CD is great fun to listen to. With wonderful and quirky renditions of favorite and well-known Christmas carols, the Klezmonauts have created a gem! Friends and I listened to track after track with broad smiles. We were continually surprised and pleased with each new song. Many of the tracks incorporate unusual and delightful changes in rhythm and flavor. This is no traditional holiday album, and I recommend it highly to all who enjoy music that is anything but ordinary!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 13, 1998
Format: Audio CD
This is a wonderful, if too brief, assortment of Klezmer arrangements of Christmas songs - the ideas, performances and production are fabulous, but it's disappointing to have less than a half-hour's worth of material to hear!! Still, LITTLE DRUMMER BOY is priceless, and alone worth the price of admission!
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