We’re kicking off Giving Tuesday early this year! Your donation today will be matched up to $10K, doubling your impact! If you donate $50 today, the Reader will receive $100.

The Reader is now a community-funded nonprofit newsroom. Can we count on your support to help keep us publishing?

  • Klezmatics

Last year New York’s Klezmatics released a double CD called Live at Town Hall on their own Klezmatics Disc label, an in-concert overview of a career that at the time was 25 years long. Back in 1986, when the band played its first gig, klezmer was largely forgotten, though in the 70s people like Andy Statman and the Klezmer Conservatory Band had passionately fought its extinction. Thanks to the Klezmatics’ efforts to modernize the form, it re-emerged as a vital tradition that’s proved itself elastic enough to accommodate stylistic fusions and relatively contemporary iterations, like the work of DJ Socalled. Since the 90s, the likes of Don Byron, Brave Old World, Naftule’s Dream, Joel Rubin, and Davka have stoked klezmer’s fires, helping give it an appeal more widespread than at any time in its history (the music arrived in the U.S. from the shtetls of eastern Europe in the 1920s).