Strings Attached To Sephardic Culture

‘Spanish Odyssey’ duo blends chamber music, jazz and klezmer.

Special To The Jewish Week

The guitar rings like chimes, sounding almost celestial. The bowed lines of the double-bass sigh like a human voice, yearning. The textures and timbres that come out of the instruments are as rich and full as those of a much larger ensemble. It is, quite simply, an enchantingly beautiful sound.

Guitarist Nadav Lev and bassist Remy Yulzari play next week at the Museum at Eldridge Street. Adam Cohen

Rabbinic Jazz

Poet Jake Marmer teams up with Rabbi Greg Wall and trumpeter Frank London.

Special to the Jewish Week

From the first, poetry was linked to music. Torah has always been chanted. The Greek bards accompanied themselves on instruments. The distinction between verse and song probably was an elastic one until the coming of the printing press. Whenever the disconnect took place, whatever its cause, poetry and music have continued to run alongside one another, two long railroad tracks that intersect frequently, if not constantly.

Just ask Jake Marmer.

“All poetry began as song, and jazz-and-poetry has always existed,” the Ukraine-born poet says with a grin.

Jake Marmer, who wants to complicate the distinction between poetry and music, is a newcomer to the jazz-and-poetry scene.

The Music Of Change

As Greg Wall adapts to new demographics at his shul, its second annual Radical Jewish Music Festival is on tap.

Special To The Jewish Week

It hasn’t been what he expected. Which suits Rabbi Greg Wall just fine, thank you.

Rabbi and tenor saxophonist Greg Wall

Jewish Singer Hooked On Bossa Nova

How does a rabbi’s kid from New Jersey get swept up in a Brazilian musical wave? Meet singer-songwriter Avi Wisnia.

Special To The Jewish Week

If singer-songwriter Avi Wisnia’s new CD “Something New” were a tapestry, when you turn it over you would see a bright yellow-green thread running through every song, a skein of Brazilian jazz steeped in bossa nova and samba. That is a nice musical preoccupation to have under any circumstances, but as one critic asked recently, How does a rabbi’s kid from New Jersey get hooked on bossa nova? And we do mean hooked: Wisnia did his undergraduate work at NYU’s Albert Gallatin School on Brazilian music, language and culture.

Singer-songwriter Avi Wisnia
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