Yuriy Gurzhy - RICHARD WAGNER & DIE KLEZMERBAND

RICHARD WAGNER & DIE KLEZMERBAND (CD) AUF DER SUCHE NACH DEM NEUEN JÜDISCHEN SOUND IN DE

CD

Enjoy Jazz Records / ERJ000

Front View : Yuriy Gurzhy - RICHARD WAGNER & DIE KLEZMERBAND (CD) AUF DER SUCHE NACH DEM NEUEN JÜDISCHEN SOUND IN DE - Enjoy Jazz Records / ERJ000
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AUF DER SUCHE NACH DEM NEUEN JUEDISCHEN SOUND IN DE

Earlier this year, Yuriy Gurzhy, former DJ of the legendary "Russendisko" and co-founder of the
multilingual Berlin band RotFront, presented his first book: a fascinating interview volume compiled
in a kind of sampling aesthetic on the subject of "Richard Wagner & and the Klezmer Band. In Search
of the New Jewish Sound in Germany" (Ariella Verlag). The idea for it arose in a conversation
between Gurzhy and Rainer Kern, the director of the Enjoy Jazz Festival. The book quickly attracted
keen interest far beyond the feuilletons. "Suddenly readers were complaining to me that reading it
had made them very keen to hear the music, but they couldn't hear it. What they wanted, and I
thought it was actually quite logical, was a soundtrack to the book."
And that very soundtrack is now available. Yuriy Gurzhy, as a DJ a specialist in the field of compiling,
has knowledgeably selected all the pieces himself. "It was important to me that the music could be
listened to with pleasure even without having read the book. It's a good eclectic mix, ranging from
folk to hip-hop. In the end, however, it will be in many cases that the music will make you want to
listen to the book and vice versa. The two dimensions complement each other perfectly." The 18-
track CD is also the first release from Enjoy Jazz Records, the new "festival label for jazz and more."
At first glance, it may seem irritating that Gurzhy mentions the avowed anti-Semite Richard Wagner
and klezmer, i.e. Jewish folk music, in the same sentence. In the "Jüdische Allgemeine" Gurzhy
answered the question why he included the German composer in the title of his book: "This is just
my little revenge on Wagner, because his anti-Semitism is also a cliché. And for many musicians and
music listeners, klezmer is also a cliché and a synonym for Jewish music, although there is much more
to it than that."
Against this background, by the way, Gurzhy himself provides one of the highlights of the album. For
in the RotFront song "Girl from Bayreuth" he bilingually tells the absurdly convoluted story of how a
man falls unrequitedly in love with a blond German violinist during a Wagner concert in Tel Aviv and
from then on incessantly maltreats his neighbor through the thin walls with a mixture of crying fits
and Wagner music. In addition, there is a wonderfully ironic side-splitting by Geoff Berner,
performed in a children's song ductus ("Half-German Girlfriend"), a Balkanese brass version of the
folk song "Hava Nagila" by Shazalakazoo/Edi Partizani or the organ-soaked rock of Forshpil ("Meydl in
di yorn"), of course with guitar solo.
Both the CD and the book deliberately refuse to give a clear definition of what Jewish music actually
is. But it is precisely from this careful distance to encyclopedic delimitation that an open and exciting
musical discourse emerges. For Gurzhy himself, by the way, Jewish music was first and foremost "the
music that my grandfather played to me on his record player when I was a child in Kharkiv". Since
those days, the Ukrainian-born musician, who has lived in Berlin for almost 30 years, has said: "Music
is a home." And with a wink he adds, "With music it's probably like with love. You can analyze for a
very long time why you feel so comfortable with a person, but to really explain it is difficult."
Yuriy Gurzhy sums up the meaning of this music for himself as follows: "It's the soundtrack to the
search for one's Jewish identity." Because, Gurzhy says, "For me, questions like 'What does it
fundamentally mean to be Jewish?' but also 'What does it mean to be Jewish in 21st century
Germany?' are always connected to music." Thus, this music curated by Gurzhy has at least one
common denominator. Specific musical as well as extra-musical Jewish experiences are collected in it
- in great diversity and filled with the artistic power to permanently renew itself. [info sheet from distr.]
presale
14.28 EUR *
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Pre sale
28.10.2022

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