Friday, October 21, 2011

Grateful Dead percussionist Mickey Hart on recording a klezmer in a gym

Ok, it's way too short but this video of Mickey Hart describing recording a klezmer band is a hoot. Mickey Hart is a world-class percussionist, both as a member of the Grateful Dead and through a variety of performance and recording projects.

The album, The Golden Gate Gypsy Orchestra's "The Traveling Jewish Wedding," was released back in 1980 and was just re-released on Smithsonian Folkways as part of the Mickey Hart collection. It's a fine early klezmer revival recording and is actually one of the one of the first klezmer album's I owned. It's loaded with fine, though not outstanding, cimbalom, violin, and folkie vocals and in true klezmer revival form it's regionally omnivorous and indiscriminate. It including traditional Yiddisn and klezmer tunes, Sephardic tunes, and one or two that sound very influenced by Israeli folk music. Great stuff.

I had no idea, though, that Mickey Hart recorded it. Guess I didn't read the liner notes on that one.

Mickey and Fred on Recording Golden Gate Gypsy Orchestra

While the Golden Gate Gypsy Orchestra is no more, if you happen to be in Hawaii GGSO's Barry and Gloria Blum would be happy to perform at your wedding, bar mitzvah or bris.


Smithsonian Folkways Recordings said...

Thanks for the post about The Mickey Hart Collection!

FYI - there is a second video about The Travelling Jewish Wedding album as well that you and your readers may be interested in.

thanks again,

David Horgan
Smithsonian Folkways

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Anonymous said...

my fiancee (half jewish) in the west of ireland (horgan land) just found your michigan website + we listened to california klezmer..while i was making my new york 'glass of tea'. thanks for the trad new years eve 2012 micky morning music

Jack said...

I'm glad to be part of your tradition!