Israel has had some terrific war songs, going back to 1948’s Palmach march, and 1967’s “Jerusalem of Gold,” performed for the first time as an elegy in May of that year, but transformed into a celebratory psalm three weeks later after the Six-Day War. The greatest English song supporting an embattled Israel is Bob Dylan’s blistering, sarcastic and yet poetic “Neighborhood Bully” of 1983, written in the wake of Israel’s leveling of an Iraqi nuclear reactor and of the 1982 Lebanon war.
George Robinson |
Special To The Jewish Week
When rockets are falling on your hometown and you’re half a world away, it’s hard to concentrate on music. Alon Nechushtan’s family is in Rishon LeZion, “in rocket range, just north of Rehovot,” the pianist-composer says with a wan smile. He is in New York City with his wife and child, pursuing a burgeoning career as a jazz musician. He doesn’t want to talk about this subject, other than to drily observe that “these are toxic times.”
Ted Merwin |
Special to the Jewish Week
By the time that Kutsher’s Country Club fell to the wrecking ball in May, the Catskills were already long past their prime as a Jewish vacation paradise. In fact, the popularity of the “Jewish Alps” was already waning in the 1970s, when “The Gig,” Doug Cohen’s new musical about a group of amateur jazz musicians who land a prized booking in the Borscht Belt, is set.