My pal David Katznelson is co-founder of Idelsohn Society, a non-profit dedicated to the musicology of great old Jewish music. Indeed, it was named after Abraham Zevi Idelsohn, a musicologist who also wrote the classic tune "Hava Nagila." The Society reissues incredibly strange, offbeat, "space age," and fantastic vintage Jewish albums by the likes of Irving Fields, Gershon Kingsley, and The Barry Sisters. I have all of the releases and every one is absolutely fantastic. I can't recommend them enough. Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah, and in celebration David and his gang put together what is now my favorite Hanukkah compilation ever. Hit play below and head over to the Idelsohn Society to buy some CDs in support of the organization!
From the Idelsohn Society:
In honor of the holiday season, we are proud to offer this little mix of music culled from our various albums, archives and projects. There's plenty of choice old-school tracks mixed in with new school Idelsohn exclusives like the re-mix of the Yemenite Trio by Soulico's DJ Sabbo. Songs from Lionel Hampton and Marlena Shaw are just a taste of what's to come on our next release forthcoming in 2010, Black Sabbath, an homage to the musical history of Blacks and Jews. Of course, there's also a couple of classic Christmas anthems courtesy of that other tradition's most beloved holiday crooners, Barbra and Neil.
"The Problem"- Ray Brenner & Barry E. Blitzer
"White Christmas"-Barbra Streisand
"Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel"- Ella Jenkins
"Hava Nagila"- Lionel Hampton
"Mizrachi on the Drums (Sabbo Remix)"/"Seeing Israel"- The Yemenite
Trio Vs. George Jessel
"Kale Kale"- Avram Grobard
"Holiday Mambo"- Machito & His Afro-Cubans
"They're Serving the Fish"- Benny Bell & The Brownsville Klezmers
"Blue"/"Santa Claus"- King Midas Sound vs. Ray Brenner & Barry E.
"Where Can I Go?"- Marlena Shaw
"The Jewish Experience (MIS Remix)"/ "In The Beginning"- Gershon
Kingsley vs. Charlton Heston
"Songs My Mother Loved"- Milton Berle
"That Old Black Magic"- Johnny Mathis
"Loco"- Don Tosti
"Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas"- Neil Diamond
"Hanukkah Dance"-Woody Guthrie