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Klezmer artist David Krakauer plays at the Havurah

David Krakauer and DJ Socalled will perform at the Havurah Shir Hadash Synagogue on December 12 at 7:30 p.m. Clarinet player Krakauer will play music from his CD &

Bubbemeises: Lies My Gramma Told Me,&

teamed with Jewish hip-hop beat architect Socalled.

Early on, Krakauer realized that the most important thing a musician can do is find and express their unique and original voice.



s why I gave up jazz!&

explains Krakauer. &

I admired these jazz players like Coltrane and Sidney Bechet and the originality they strove for. You&

d hear one note on the radio and say &

145;that is Coltrane.&


s absolutely no mistaking that sound, which is something that I always prized so much. At the time I thought, &

145;What can I do? How can I be original?&


And that is what he has been searching for ever since.


s why the man goes through clarinet reeds like crazy. Not just wearing them out with his aggressive and emotional playing, but before they are even broken in. &

I go for a really klezmer sound in my playing,&

Krakauer says. &

When I play classical, I play with a completely different mouth piece and reed. It has a rounder, darker, more-controlled sound. My klezmer mouthpiece allows me to play with a tremendous amount of power and flexibility in timbre. It gives me a much bigger palette in terms of bending and messing with the sound. It&

s a rougher, edgier sound. It&

s throatier. It screams more. It&

s a mouthpiece that can cut through steel.&


When I recorded with the Kronos Quartet on an earlier project, I thought maybe I would use the classical mouthpiece,&

explains Krakauer. &

We did a take and I wasn&

t happy with it. So I changed to my klezmer mouthpiece and the Kronos was like &


s it!&

They heard my klez sound really get unleashed.&


I pick reeds accordingly,&

Krakauer continues. &

I always use the same brand and strength, but each reed is completely different. I&

ll go through a box of ten reeds and find one or two for each mouthpiece and put the rest aside. Some just sound better for klezmer; more expressive, more human.&

This goes straight to Krakauer&

s klezmer philosophy. &

If you don&

t have doyna, you don&

t have klezmer,&

Krakauer proclaims. &

The doyna is a music form that comes from Romanian shepherds&

songs and cantorial singing. It has a spiritual element but also this pastoral country element to it. The earth and the spiritual combined. The sacred and the profane. It&

s the bluesy, plaintive cry, but it also influences how you play the tunes, how you inflect and ornament the melodies. That keeps it klezmer. At a university talk recently someone implied that I have &

145;twisted klezmer.&

I say, &

145;Yes, it&

s not klezmer like from the 1920s records. But the way I play is the most loving thing I can do to keep it alive.&

Some people play klezmer technically, but they miss the klezmer sound. I want it to be klezmer, but I don&

t want it to stay in a museum and die.&


s intergenerational alliance with Socalled has been brewing for a few years and is part of a natural progression. &

When Socalled gave me a homemade recording of what he called a Hip Hop Seder in 2001,&

admits Krakauer, &

at first I was really skeptical. But I really reacted to this guy making his own weird, crazy, wild, messed-up-whatever, bizarre music! It&

s not about pasting one musical style onto another. Something else came out. I certainly would not have been able to sit at a sampler and make beats. But here&

s a guy that has created his own musical language since he was a teenager and I respond to his music. Socalled would tell you, &

145;Hip hop is all about representing, so I am going to be out there and be Jewish.&


Krakauer had the opportunity to commission three young composers for a concert at NYC&

s Merkin Concert Hall, and he called on Socalled for that. One of Socalled&

s songs made it onto Krakauer&

s Twelve Tribes CD. And he appeared on Krakauer&

s Live in Krakow. Over time, they worked together more and more. Socalled&

s appearance on Bubbemeises represents the first co-produced CD Krakauer has done.


Socalled would come to me and say here&

s a beat,&

Krakauer describes. &

Then I would write some music on top of it taking it to another dimension reacting to his thing. And my influences are as diverse as weird contemporary music and 1938 Count Basie and James Brown and God knows what else. It&

s not interesting to do an imitation of James Brown. But it is interesting if you come in contact with James Brown and digest it and something else comes out. That&

s what&

s been going on with my work with Socalled and my band Klezmer Madness. It&

s all about artistic process. Purists out there may say &

145;This isn&

t jazz or klezmer or hip hop. What the hell is it?&


s just what it is.&

Tickets are $15 in advance, $18 at the door and are available at the Havurah Shir Hadash Synagogue, located at 185 N. Mountain Ave.

— —

People celebrate with a jam session at the re-opening — of Donna's in New Orleans. The woman taking the trombone solo is Russian, — and is married to the African-American trumpeter, the bass player is British, — the woman drummer is Japanese, the 7-year old sitting in with the trumpet — is Hispanic, and the guitarist and trombonist are white. The guy in the — beret is Charlie the club owner, who's married to Donna, who's native — American and commutes on her Harley to Florida weekly to finish her Master's — in Special Education. Many of the patrons stayed in the city throughout — both storms, and this was the 13th anniversary of the club's opening, — and also Charlie Donna's 12th wedding anniversary.

Submitted photo

Benefit dance and jam set for Katrina relief

The Steven Spring Foundation presents a benefit dance part and jam session for the victims of Hurricane Katrina at the Unitarian Center on Dec. 11 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The Steven Spring Foundation is a non-profit organization named after 22-year old Ashland bass player Steven Spring who died of cancer in 2002, and whose father, local musician Peter Spring, has recently returned from his own personal musical mission to New Orleans.

The Rogue Suspects and friends Steve Sutfin, Jeff Addicott, Dal Carver and Peter Spring will provide music for dancing and host a New Orleans-style jam session open to everyone. Spring will also present a slideshow and videos of his trip to the Gulf, talk about his experiences giving out donated musical instruments, and answer questions about what&

s going on in the city that gave us jazz.

Spring will be returning to New Orleans shortly after the party to continue his work there. The owner of A Precision Piano Tuning Co. of Medford, he plans to rent a truck large enough to transport the 20 pianos in his shop to New Orleans and provide them to churches, schools, clubs, and individuals who lost their pianos in the storm. He is working with The Jazz Foundation, the New Orleans Musicians&

Clinic, and the Tipitina&

s Foundation in order to find and assist musicians in need. If you have a piano or other musical instrument or supplies to donate, or for more information, call Peter Spring at 210-3702. The Unitarian Center is located at 87 4th Street in Ashland.

A jazzy holiday concert with Leslie Kendall and Ed Dunsavage

Paschal Winery will host a dinner and holiday concert on December 10 at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m., respectively. The concert will feature jazz renditions of classic holiday music by vocalist Leslie Kendall and guitarist Ed Dunsavage. The dinner buffet will be provided by Arbor House in Talent. The dinner menu includes: one complementary glass of wine of your choice- more available at $5/glass, salmon mouse cheesecake and vegetable tray with blue cheese dip, Arbor House special chicken dijon and penne pasta alfredo, fresh green salad with homemade blue cheese or berry vinaigrette, baguette, biscuits and coffee.

Tickets are $40, $30 for Paschal Wine Club members and friends. reservation only, as seating is limited. Call Paschal Winery at 541-535-7957 to purchase your ticket.

Mix of music on tap at Mojo Rising

A dynamic bluegrass band from Portland, a benefit for grassroots efforts in the Gulf States, and an eclectic banjo/fiddle trio will be bringing Rogue Valley audiences a variety of music this month at MOJO Rising Workshop and Event Studio, 140 Lithia Way.


Friday, Dec. 9, 8 p.m.

Part way through a post-holiday tour of the western states, high-energy bluegrass traditionalists from Portland Jackstraw, will be stopping at the MOJO to pick a few tunes and entertain their growing base of Ashland-area fans. With two private-label CD recordings to their credit, Jackstraw has been playing Americana festivals around the country, and is marketing itself nationally through the International Bluegrass Music Association&

s (IBMA) annual event in Nashville. They bring laudable instrumentation and creativity to the bluegrass music tradition, blending youth, speed, grace, and care for the old tunes that make the genre so special to its fans. Tickets are $10 advance at the Music Coop, 181 A Street, Ashland; $15 at the door. Doors open at 7:30 pm; limited concert and table seating will be available.

An Evening of Music

for Mississippi

Saturday, Dec. 10, 8 p.m.

Alternative folk favorite Alice DiMicele brings together a reunion of local band, Changing Folkus, for an evening to benefit grassroots organizations in the Gulf States this holiday season. James Keigher (Ashland), Bob Evoniuk (Ashland) and Sam Cuenca (Yreka) will be joining DiMicele to perform the combination of &

mostly original&

folk, celtic, bluegrass, and Americana tunes that made Changing Folkus a delightful change of pace for these individually accomplished musicians and their audiences. Songwriter Emy Phelps (Ashland), and the Moore Brothers Bluegrass Band (Ashland) will also be joining the evening&

s performance. Admission is by sliding scale donation of $10&

150;$10,000,000. Doors open at 7:30 pm; limited concert and table seating will be available.

— — —

The Clarridge Fiddlers perform Dec. 29 at Mojo — Rising.

Submitted photo

The Clarridge Fiddlers with Ben Krakauer

Thursday, Dec. 29, 8 p.m.

Tristan and Tashina Clarridge, a brother and sister from Mt. Shasta, Calif., have each won the annual National Oldtime Fiddler&

s Contest in Weiser, ID. The annual championship more than doubles the size of the tiny town of 5,200 and has been a fixture in the swing, old time, bluegrass, and celtic communities since it began in 1953. As multi-instrumentalists and teachers, the Clarridges bring a highly advanced level of creativity, technique, and whimsy to what they call &

an eclectic mix of old time, celtic, bluegrass and jazz.&

They are joined for this performance by Ben Krakauer, banjo player and founding member of North Carolina&

s Old School Freight Train (OSFT). OSFT is the new favorite of legendary David Grisman, recording their most recent CD on his Acoustic Disc label. Tickets are $10 at the door. Doors open at 7:30 pm; seating is concert style with some standing room available.

For more information about all three December shows, call 541-324-7044 or visit www.mojorisingstudio.com.

Einstein to speak at ScienceWorks

ScienceWorks celebrates third anniversary with Einstein impersonator

In honor of their three-year anniversary, Science Works will host performer Len Barron on Dec. 9 at 7 p.m., and Dec. 10 and 11 at — p.m. and — p.m. Barron will perform &

Walking Lightly &

133; A Portrait of Einstein.&

The performance on Dec. 9 will include special fundraising and a reception.

Barron has performed throughout the U.S., spinning tales that explore Einstein&

s humanity, commitment to peace and sense of wonder.

The newest exhibit, "Toy Science,&

will be on display during the anniversary celebration. ScienceWorks exhibit builders and volunteers took a selection of classic toys and have recreated them on a larger scale. "Toy Science" offers visitors of all ages the chance to play and explore technology that created toys.

One of the major features of Toy Science, is a large scale model train set, complete with the fictional town of Canyonville, tunnels and river. ScienceWorks has taken the set, generously donated by former Ashland resident Don Sandburg, and added some special features. A mini cam mounted to the front of the train allows you to experience the track from an engineer&

s perspective. At the scale model size, you appear to be traveling 50 mph.

Other exhibits include classic Pinball Machines, Wooly Willy, Comic Climbers and more. A display of classic toys explores the theme of "Toys Following Technology." In many cases, technological advances such as miniaturized motors, plastics or tools paved the way for the creation of new toys.

In addition to the collection of toy exhibits, visitors are encouraged to create their own toys. On December 17, join game experts from Fun Again Games and learn a variety of family games that involve logic, strategy and probabilities. Besides being fun, games, as well as toys, promote lifelong learning, inspire creativity and develop connections with other people.

Tickets for the December 9 performance are $12 for members and $15 for non-members. Seating is limited. Tickets may be reserved by calling 482-6767 ext. 10.

The Dec. 10 and 11 performances are free.

ScienceWorks is open Wednesdays to Saturdays from 10 to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 12 to 4 p.m. ScienceWorks is located at 1500 East Main near Walker in Ashland. Admission is $7.50 for adults, $5 for children 2 to 12 and free for members and children under 2. For more information call 541-482-6767 or visit www.scienceworksmuseum.org.

RVSO presents holiday concerts

— — COLE — — — FITCH

The Rogue Valley Symphony Orchestra will present four Holiday Candlelight Concerts over two weekends in December.

The performances will take place at 8 p.m. on December 9 at Newman United Methodist Church in Grants Pass, 8 p.m. on Dec. 10 at the First Baptist Church in Ashland, 8 p.m. Dec. 16, and 8 p.m. on Dec. 17 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Medford.

A long-time Symphony tradition, the Candlelight Concert Series celebrates beautiful music with the ambiance of over 150 candles in local churches of Southern Oregon and is a warm musical treat to begin the holiday season. This year&

s program features guest artists Scott Cole on the violin and Irene Fitch on the oboe. They will perform Bach&

s Concerto for Violin and Oboe. The program also includes Haydn&

s Symphony No. 44, Divertimento K125a by Mozart and the Rogue Valley Symphony Brass Ensemble will perform two pieces by Gabrieli, Canzon No. 28 and In Eclisiis.


s extensive musical career includes: concertmaster of the Rogue Valley Symphony since the 2003 season, director of the University of Montana Symphony Orchestra, concertmaster in the Missoula Symphony&

s 2002/2003 season, as well as teaching positions at the University of Montana and Southern Oregon University. He has also performed with the Des Moines Symphony Orchestra and the Nashville Symphony Orchestra. He holds degrees from Colby College in Maine, the Peabody Conservatory of Music, Master of Music in violin performance from Akron University and a Doctorate in violin performance from Florida State University.

Fitch has been performing with the Rogue Valley Symphony since 1978 and has performed as principal oboist since 1998. She has been a member of several local ensembles over the years including Rogue Opera, the Northwest Bach Ensemble and the Ashland City Band.

Tickets are $22 general and $10 student. For details on this performance and upcoming events, visit the Web site www.rvsymphony.org or call the RVSO Box office at 552-6398 to purchase tickets.