Real Music & Real Estate . . .

Yiddishe Cup’s bandleader, Bert Stratton, is Klezmer Guy.

He knows about the band biz and – check this out – the real estate biz, too.

You may not care about the real estate biz. Hey, you may not care about the band biz. (See you.)

This is a blog with a gamy twist. It features tenants with snakes and skunks, and musicians with smoked fish in their pockets.

Stratton has written op-eds for the Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Washington Post.




The florist, who had a shop in Linesville, Pennsylvania, said he knew the DeBartolo family of Youngstown and had provided flowers for Clint Eastwood’s godfather’s funeral.

I know machers too, man! I felt like saying. I know, through gigs, the family that wants to rebuild Brooklyn and move in the New Jersey Nets. The boss of that family likes to hear “Oyfn Pripetchik” (On the Hearth).  I play that tune even before the boss can request it.

I’ve done a lot of fancy gigs (by Cleveland standards), Mr. Linesville Florist.  I did one where the bride’s dad bulldozed his back yard to put up three tents.  Then he put in a quarter-mile road to his front door.  Yiddishe Cup played for 15 minutes, after which a Nashville band took over.

I’ve seen clients back up A/C trucks to the old federal building to cool off guests.

I haven’t seen that sort of extravagance lately.

The florist considered renting a store from me.

He liked to talk, and not about utilities or lease terms.  He talked about Clint Eastwood’s godfather — “a simple western P.A. man whose coffin had a flower spray that floated on Styrofoam over the casket.”

The florist said he had spent the past 30 years in Linesville, where ducks walk on carp at the Pymatuning Reservoir spillway.  “That is the second biggest tourist attraction, to the Liberty Bell, in Pennsylvania,” he said.


He showed me the bee stings on his arms. “There are a lot of yellow jackets because I live out in the country,” he said.

The florist wanted to move back to the city, he said.  He winked at me. “We are going to be partners in crime!”

He began talking about the DeBartolos of San Francisco. Then Clint Eastwood’s floating  sprig again.  Maybe the florist had talked only to ducks and carp in 30 years and was lonely.

After a half hour, I interrupted, “Give me a call when you’re ready to put down a deposit.  I have to go.”

“You’ll be hearing from me!”

I didn’t.

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