Klezmer Connection

Klezmer music has arrived at an interesting place after a couple of hundred years. The Jewish folk music from Eastern Europe originally was used for celebratory events such as weddings.

"Weddings were huge events back then. They could last a couple of days," says Michael Winograd, clarinetist and composer for his Michael Winograd Klezmer Trio. "Klezmer wasn't concert-oriented for a long time."

As klezmer music survived the years, it became something new — something less functional that could be considered for listening or presentation.

"A lot of musicians discovered they could relate to it," Winograd says. "They made it unique by putting their own spin on it."

The Michael Winograd Klezmer Trio, with Patrick Farrell on accordion and Benjy Fox-Rosen on stand-up bass, will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14, at Havurah Shir Hadash, 185 N. Mountain Ave., Ashland.

The trio based in Brooklyn, N.Y., has played plenty of traditional klezmer music, and each musician is involved in many other projects.

Winograd has recorded and performed with Josh Dolgin, aka Socalled, a Canadian rapper known for his mix of hip-hop and klezmer; Budowitz, a klezmer band that incorporates 19th-century instruments and the folk music of Bessarabia, Galicia and Bukovina; and trumpeter and klezmer composer Frank London. Winograd also plays synthesizer with rock band Yiddish Princess.

Farrell specializes in cabaret, theater, klezmer and other Eastern European folk music and leads his own group, the Stagger Back Brass Band. He also plays with Balkan and Gypsy music groups Romashka and Ljova and the Kontraband. Fox-Rosen sings in Yiddish, composes, has toured throughout Central and Eastern Europe and taught at the Vilnius Yiddish Institute in Lithuania.

Winograd was born in Queens, raised in Long Island and attended the New England Conservatory in Boston. He met Farrell about seven years ago at a klezmer workshop near Montreal. Fox-Rosen is from Los Angeles, but moved to New York City to study music at The New School.

The trio has a live concert CD available at its shows. A new studio CD is set to be released later this year. Winograd's "Bessarabian Hop" is available at CD Baby. Tickets for the show at the Havurah cost $10 in advance and are available at Music Coop in Ashland or www.brownpapertickets.com. Tickets will cost $12 at the door, $8 for students. Children 11 and younger will be admitted free. Call 541-488-7716.

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