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A Veteran Klezmer Bassist Steps Out Front

04/08/2010
Special to the Jewish Week

Jim Guttmann was there at the beginning.

In 1980 he ran into Hankus Netsky, who was looking for a bass player for a new venture. Guttmann, a bassist, was "working at Rosie's Bakery" in Cambridge, Mass., so when Netsky asked if he was interested in playing Jewish music, he quickly replied in the affirmative although, he admits today, "I didn't know what he was talking about." He found out soon enough; the band had a concert two weeks later, at which Guttmann played.

Jim Guttmann will be performing music from his first CD as a leader, "Bessarabian Breakdown," at Joe's Pub next week.

King-Size Attraction

NBA’s Sabra rookie Omri Casspi, who faces the Nets next week, is big draw on and off the court. And he wears Number 18.

03/18/2010
Staff Writer

The game last month featured a pair of teams with losing records and sorry recent histories, but the seats behind one of the baskets at Madison Square Garden was crowded with scores of flag-waving, photo-snapping fans nearly two hours before tip-off between the New York Knicks and the visiting Sacramento Kings.

“I’m not a religious person. But I love to pray to God and celebrate all the holidays,” Omri Casspi says.

Challenged Adults Act Out — In A Good Way

Improvisational exercises and role-playing games
‘teach life skills’ to those in Ohel program.

03/11/2010
Special To The Jewish Week

Black Box Studios.

Tiger Woods: “Bogey Man Loves His Niblick’

02/23/2010

The highest-paid professional athlete in 2008, having earned an estimated $110 million from winnings and endorsements, explained the secret to his golf success as well as his subsequent loss of endorsements, family, and reputation with one word: Putts.

“It’s the secret to everything I’ve become,” admitted Woods. “And believe me, it takes one to know one.”

How Chess Explains The (Jewish) World

02/20/2008
Special To The Jewish Week

For a bright yeshiva student, hungry to understand the nature of the world, there is little to distract from the promise and genius of the Talmud — except, perhaps, for chess.

A Fall Sampler

10/03/2003
Special To The Jewish Week

The CDs have been piling up on my desk in recent weeks. Happily, there are some real gems here, so clearing the desk is a pleasure. Hopefully, this will encourage you to grab some for yourself before the leaves turn. But get comfortable, because this will go on until the proverbial frost is on the proverbial pumpkin. Or the snow is on the chanukiyah.

Choral Music of Congregation Shearith Israel (self-distributed)

Klez-Jazz Uptown

08/08/2003
Special To The Jewish Week

Long before hip-hop turned sampling into an art form, before “postmodernism” became a label slapped on anyone whose music borrowed eclectically from other cultures and traditions, Jewish music was evolving through a process of accretion, taking scales from this neighbor, rhythms from that one, harmonies from yet another, making a virtue of the necessities of the diaspora.

That process has continued to this moment as contemporary Jewish musicians unblushingly put the hyphens in klez-jazz.

Wooden Ships: Almanac For A Cold November

Sunday, November 23rd, 2008 This is the season of Mashiv HaRuach, “He makes the wind blow and the rain fall.” And this was Shabbat Mevorchim, the Blessing of the New Month — Chanukah’s month, Kislev, beginning Thanksgiving night, Nov. 27.  

Eyes On An Elusive Prize

12/30/2008
Staff Writer
For Nathan Rubinstein, a traditional bar mitzvah seemed improbable, if not impossible. Born with an optic glioma — a severe type of eye cancer —– Nathan endured nearly five years of chemotherapy beginning when he was 3. The treatment left him entirely sightless in his left eye and with only marginal vision in his right.
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