Simcha Time: Mickey Katz Plays Music for Weddings, Bar Mitzvahs and Brisses

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jordan R. Young
Though he was perhaps the greatest exponent of klezmer in his day, or "Jewish jazz" as he called it, Mickey Katz was too modest to suggest such a thing. Most contemporary practitioners of the genre including Don Byron, who has done much to revive the bandleader's work in recent years sound anemic by comparison with the full-bodied sound of Mickey Katz & His Kosher Jammers, who can be heard in all their glory on this compilation album. If the joyous, high-spirited sessions preserved here sound like a group of top-notch musicians having the time of their lives, it is no accident. The recording studio was very much a party atmosphere, complete with Jewish soul food ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jordan R. Young
Though he was perhaps the greatest exponent of klezmer in his day, or "Jewish jazz" as he called it, Mickey Katz was too modest to suggest such a thing. Most contemporary practitioners of the genre including Don Byron, who has done much to revive the bandleader's work in recent years sound anemic by comparison with the full-bodied sound of Mickey Katz & His Kosher Jammers, who can be heard in all their glory on this compilation album. If the joyous, high-spirited sessions preserved here sound like a group of top-notch musicians having the time of their lives, it is no accident. The recording studio was very much a party atmosphere, complete with Jewish soul food courtesy of the nearest kosher deli. And the sidemen -- including Benny Goodman's legendary trumpet player Ziggy Elman; trumpeter Manny Klein, one of the busiest sidemen on the West Coast; trombonist Si Zentner; pianist/arranger Nat Farber; and drummer Sam Weiss, who brought the klezmer sound to the Artie Shaw Orchestra -- were urged to pull out all the stops. Five previously unreleased tracks are included here, not to mention three selections from Katz's Broadway revue, Hello, Solly! That none of Katz's celebrated English-Yiddish parodies of 1950s pop songs appear on this Will Friedwald-produced compilation may be a blessing in disguise. The bandleader could be so wickedly funny -- machine-gunning the listener with wacky lyrics, outrageous bilingual puns, and vocal effects left over from his days with Spike Jones -- that the comedy sometimes obscured the brilliant musicianship on his now sought-after LPs.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/15/1994
  • Label: Blue Note Records
  • UPC: 724383045327
  • Catalog Number: 30453

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Mickey Katz Primary Artist, Clarinet, Leader, Vocals
Billy May Conductor
Ziggy Elman Trumpet
Earl Gaines Bass
Bob Bain Guitar
Si Zentner Trombone
Rafael Mendez Trumpet
Harold Diner Trombone
Benny Gill Violin
Jules Jacob Woodwind
Manny Klein Trumpet
Lou Raderman Violin
Ray Sherman Piano
Lou Singer Synthesizer, Drums, Xylophone
Champ Webb Woodwind
Vincent DeRosa French Horn
Sherman Piano
Larry Breen Bass
Sam Weiss Drums
Lou Baderman Violin
Morris Bercov Reeds, Multiple Reeds, Woodwind
Nat Farber Piano
Harry Frohman Piano
Gill Violin
Ralph Hansell Xylophone
Jack Hilliard Vocals
Terry Howard Woodwind
Frank Messina Accordion
Jack Rose Guitar
George W. Smith Reeds, Multiple Reeds
Technical Credits
George Gershwin Composer
Billy May Arranger
Sheldon Harnick Composer
Jerry Bock Composer
Will Friedwald Producer, Liner Notes
Voyle Gilmore Producer
Vincent DeRosa Contributor
Mickey Katz Composer
Nat Farber Arranger, Composer
Alan Livingston Producer
Traditional Composer
Alan Livingston Producer
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