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article on Israeli music in "Maamakim"

I don't know if I've mentioned "Maamakim", but it's an interesting-looking website on Jewish music. The website is hosted at Yeshiva University, these days generally considered part of the frummer-than-thou branch of Jewish Orthodoxy. There is a lot of religious-inspired music mentioned (and I hasten to confess I have no "frummer" scale on which to judge it - if anyone has such a thing) and sampled on the pages, but the magazine is much broader. The current issue includes an interview with Basya Schechter of Pharaoh's Daughter and a positive review of "Trumpet in the Wadi," an Israeli movie that is a Jewish-Christian Arab love story. Here's a recent article on Israeli Ethiopian and Mizrahi music cited by Eva Broman on the Jewish-Music list:

Dave’s Guide to Israeli Music, Part 2: Mizrahi and Ethiopian Music by magazine chief editor David Druce.


As a huge fan of klezmer music I love the reviews on Klezmer Shack. They will often show me a band that I have missed hearing... and will soon become a favorite. Just a comment on the mimaamakim post; YU is generally considered more Modern then the Ultra-Orthodox. It is not chassidic, and in fact encourages interaction with the modern world (while other groups will frown upon any interaction).

Hi Mordy. Points well-taken. But from talking with YU students I have had an impression for several years that it is not the YU I knew about 20 years ago, or the YU that Rabbi Soloveitchik played such an important role in defining. Hence my comment (granted, a rather snarky comment for second-hand knowledge) about "frummer-than-thou".

In any event, I should shut up and let the website speak for itself. And if someone knows of anyone else doing even a tenth of what these folks are doing to cover a broad spectrum of Jewish arts thoughtfully, point me to 'em, because I haven't found it.

As a student at YU, there certainly are students and rabbinic leaders who are 'frummier than thou'. Communicating and finding common ground with them is part of the challenge of organizations like Mima'amakim. I can't comment on what the school's philosophy was like twenty years ago-I, like all present students was an infant at the time, but please, judge us from our works of artistic expression, and as individuals, to not be 'more sophisticated than thou.'

That said, I'm flattered my article made Klezmer Shack. If you enjoyed it, then check out my on-line radio show 'Haflah Radio' every Wednesday @8 PM EST, on www.wyur.org. My DJ, Isaac from Morrocco and I play lots of Israeli, especially Mirazhi hits, discuss cultural and political issues-listen to the songs mentioned in Mima'amakim.