Anna Maria Turcato sent me this:

Meshuge Klezmer Band

from Verona/Italy

(actually, the very first Italian Klezmer band I got to hear of ...)

hi detlev, I send you hereafter a short bio of an italian group "meshuge klezmer band" which i represent.
thank you.
anna maria

Based in Verona, the Meshuge Klezmer Band has been founded by musicians coming from different cultural experiences with the intent of widely promoting klezmer and yiddish music.

They basically play instrumental songs: traditional dances (bulgar, freylekh, khosidl) originally performed by klezmorim musicians travelling between the Ashkenazic communities of Eastern Europe for the main Jewish holidays (Purim, Hanukkah etc.) or for personal religious events like weddings, milah, bar mitzvah etc.

They also play instrumental tunes composed by great Jewish musicians emigrated from Eastern Europe to America at the beginning of the 20th century, especially to the N.Y.C. area, like Naftule Brandwein, Dave Tarras, Abe Schwartz, and also pieces by contemporary and avant-garde musicians like John Zorn, promoter of the Tzadik musical project and main follower of the New Radical Jewish culture.

Their tunes are mostly influenced by jazz and are fit for new harmonizations and excursions in a more free background. Following the klezmer tradition, the band often plays for the most important religious events of the Jewish community of Verona.

In May 1997, in Milan, the Meshuge Klezmer Band won the national musical award "Ma che razza di musica" and performed at Palavobis for "Extrafesta", a national musical festival promoted by Radio Popolare Network.

In December 1999, in Pisa, MKB opened for the Nessiah festival, following an imaginary travel through the Jewish musical tradition.

At the end of February 2000, the clarinet player David Krakauer invited MKB in NYC to play for the "Klezmer Brunch" series hosted by Tonic club, a venue in Manhattan's Lower East Side attended by the greatest musicians of the new jazz and klezmer scene.

The first MKB album is called Dreidel, the name of a special four faced spinning top inscribed with four Hebrew letters, a children game during Hanukkah.

This name represents MKB's musical concept: respecting the tradition (when the spinning top stops you can clearly read the Hebrew letters that recall the Jewish holiday) but also looking for newer sounds (while the spinning top is whirling you can't distinctly read the letters).

MKB have recently recorded their second album Treyf, featuring Frank London, leader and trumpet player with Klezmatics, Dave Harris and Peter Fitzpatrick, trombonist and guitarist with Boston based band Naftule's Dream.


Fabio Basile: electric guitar
Stefano Corsi: acoustic bass
Zeno de Rossi: drums
Roberto Lanciai: alto and soprano sax
Andrea Ranzato: accordion
Maria Vicentini: violin, viola

Info and contacts:
Anna Maria Turcato
ph.: +39 045 597000
fax: +39 045 597891

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