Friday, November 9, 2012

Whole Phamily Takes the Crew on the Road

In case you might have missed our most recent gig Camping with My Kids & a Whole Bunch of Jam Bands  last June, you all have a second chance to join up with the Whole Phamily crew in just a few weeks!

We are so thrilled to be a part of Blues for Challah:  The Second Set, a "weekend-long workshop exploring the spiritual and mystical aspects of the Grateful Dead and Bob Dylan," writes Seth Rogovoy on his Rogovoy Report.  Whole Phamily is heading up the programs for children on Friday night and Shabbat morning.

In case you were wondering, my friendly friends, this is a pluralistic event, welcome folks of all persuasions (but a love of the Grateful Dead is sorta the point...). You don't have to be Jewish, but it don't hurt to be, neither. And, in case you were wondering, my frum friend or relative (yep, Heshy, I'm talkin' to you), this is, indeed a shabbaton.  Just different than my 8th grade experience.   I have desired to attend an event at Isabella Freedman and its affiliate Elat Chayyim since the mid '90s, living as a single working woman on Upper West Side.  It is finally, baruch hashem, coming to fruition!  And on the cusp of mine and Stango's 11th wedding anniversary and right after my birthday, no less.  Someone is surely watching over us for the good.

 C'mon Children! Shabbat Fun for Kids

Pipe cleaner creations and a fun food craft are among just the many exciting things we have planned for kids of all ages.  Concealed Light, The Wolfman and the Wolfman's Brother will be there ready to have a whole lot of fun with all the kids.  We'll sing classic tot-shabbat tunes, do puppet shows and read stories.  We will talk about that week's torah portion, Vayishlach, in an interactive way and maybe even make up a skit about it!  Who knows, maybe kids will even get to borrow their very own Pez dispensers as a shabbat treat on Friday night.  Parents, just be chill with the food coloring, ok?  It's 12 tiny pieces of candy!  And if the goats are willing, maybe we'll take a walk over and say 'mehhhhh!  So much more can and will happen.  Anyone under the age of 21 who is shlepped along for this epic shabbaton is a lucky one and for sure should be grateful!

Stango will likely be found during those times in the shul, but off-the-record will be available for any brain-talk-walk therapy and of course discussion of chassidus and Jerry that folks might be interested in.

For more info, read what Seth Rogovoy wrote on his blog regarding the event.
(remember when I reviewed Rogovoy's book on Dylan?)

Or what Josh Fleet wrote in his Huffington Post coverage.

All-inclusive prices, which include farm-to-table food and wine and lodging, begin at $233 for the 2-night event.  EARLY BIRD REGISTRATION DISCOUNT EXTENDED UNTIL TODAY NOVEMBER 9, 2012!

For more info check out Blues for Challah:  Second Set.

Have a good Shabbes, have a good show!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Nor'easter this week...Cold, Rain & Snow

My heart goes out to those folks who are still without power due to Hurricane Sandy.  The conditions are unfathomable.

And now we're expecting a nor'easter in Philly?  I'd rather be where those chilly winds don't blow.

Here's a little ditty from 32 years ago, almost to the date...

Monday, November 5, 2012

Baruch Dayan Emet: Larry Bloch

The man who created the club the Wetlands in lower Manhattan, Larry Bloch, passed away on Sunday of pancreatic cancer, the Bratteboro Reformer reports.  The Wetlands was a place that allowed me to get my own feet wet in the jam band scene.  Admittedly, I didn't go nearly as much as I should have, but I knew that it was the place to be and wished I went more.  Still somewhat in-the-box and not having a group of friends to venture with to Tribeca from the Upper West Side, I saw just a handful of shows in my early 20s at The Wetlands.  But these shows provided a foundation from which I was able to build and grow strongly in the appreciation of live music.

Larry Bloch was a trailblazer and built an institution in a neighborhood that, at the time, was so undesirable that who knew Tribeca would become what it is today.  He created a space that allowed people to learn more about two great things in life:  environmental activism and good ole' fashioned rock-n-roll.

May Larry Bloch's, son of Ephraim and Miriam, memory be for a blessing.

I loved flipping to the ad section of The Village Voice and looking at the bands where were playing that week.   Usually it was the Zen Tricksters.  Often it was bands I had never heard of and never went to hear.

Thank you for being an enabler.
Larry enabled folks to hear great music.
Larry enabled folks to care about the earth.

These are two very good things, and for those who are in the know, you know what I mean.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Come Together, Right Now, Judæo-Tat

Y'ave heard of Yiddish.
Y'ave maybe heard of Ladino.
Ya've less likely heard of Judæo-Tat aka Juhuri.

My friend Zita came to this country at the age of 3.  Her family is from Azerbaijan.  This is where Jews of the eastern Caucasus mountains lived.  She grew up speaking Juhuri.  Not Russian, as I mistakenly thought.

Neither Ashkenazi nor Sephardi:  Zita is of Mizrachi descent, from a country that was Arab-ruled.  Her family comes from no place of European origin:  like Indian, Iranian, Syrian and other locales, she comes from a community of the East.

Having studied in Israel during college, I learned of mizrachim years ago, but it is a sad state of my affairs that I have simply forgotten about them.  It has just been too long, and perhaps I have become so America-focused to my detriment.  Plus, the presence of mizrachi Jews is overshadowed in the United States greatly by the prevalent Ashkenazi culture.  Most Americans know about matza balls.  Savvy New Yorkers (who aren't so strict with their kashrut) certainly know of the scrumptious chicken in the pot at 2nd Avenue Deli.  But who knows about tchorba?

Remember when Amit Women used to be called Mizrachi Women's Organization of America?  I wonder and sortof doubt that any of my new friends at the recent Amit Women Saks' event discoursed about this.  Why would they?  Belts and bags are a lot more interesting!

For thousands of years we have been dispersed.  We have so many various cultures and customs.  All this is nice and dandy, but isn't it time we just merge back together so we're just Jewish?