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. So maybe he’s really Klezmer Landlord.

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 New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post.



It wouldn’t cost much for me to open a klezmer store.  I have several vacant storefronts.

I could put my store — call it the Klezmer Shack — next to the Bass Shop.  The Bass Shop doesn’t sell basses, but string players brake for it anyway.  The Bass Shop is a bait and tackle store.

Some of my  merchandise:

The Jewish Fake Book by Velvet Pasternak. Useful for anybody who wants to pass as a Jew.  You’ll learn your way around seltzer and freylekhs (horas).  Plus you’ll learn the Hebrew lyrics to  “Jerusalem of Gold”  and “Bashana Haba’a.”

Yiddishe Cup latkes.

Dave Tarras’ Freilachs, Bulgars, Horas — 22 clarinet tunes, handwritten by the master himself.  I got my copy in Delray Beach, Florida, from the widow of Harold Branch, the late New York bandleader.

Irwin Weinberger’s autoharp.  Please buy it!  (Irwin is Yiddishe Cup’s singer.)

Harold Branch’s Club Date Handbook.   You’ll learn what to play when the caterer wheels in the Viennese dessert cart at a 1968 New York bar mitzvah party.   For the flaming jubilee, play “Funiculi, Funicula.”   (For the main course — the roast beef — play “I’m an Old Cowhand.”)

Clarinet neck straps.  Hard to find.  We have them.

Clarinet travel bags.  Ours are imported from the Pilot truck stop, Lodi, Ohio.

Two Twistin The Freilach LPs, 1961.  Used.

Seven Kleveland Klezmorim Sound of the World’s Soul LPs, 1985.  Never opened.

Klezmer gum.


Footnote:  There  is a Klezmer Shack website,  run by Ari Davidow, who is allowing me to use the name for my store, I think.

Yiddishe Cup plays First Night Akron (Ohio) 6:15 p.m. Sat., Dec. 31.

Here’s a video by Kasumi,  who teaches at the Cleveland Institute of Art.  She won a 2011 Guggenheim Fellowship for her vid work.  This video is Yiddishe Cup.

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1 Ari { 12.21.11 at 9:36 am }

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was a real, live Klezmer Shack! Go for it, and thanks for the shout out.

What would be even better would be to open a klezmer shack and add some extras–a Wednesday night “piyyut” class–those Middle-Eastern-sounding Jewish songs of praise that are so popular in Israel these days, say. Or, maybe you feature in the store window (or a cabinet in the back–you know the reputation of these guys) a closet where you look over local klezmorim and rent the one of your choice. (Would the rented klezmer have to play klezmer when rented? There could be some additional angles here. Rent to buy?)

2 Kenny G { 12.21.11 at 10:11 am }

Please note important “comment” I just posted with last week’s contribution…. [Re: “Beer and Coconut Bars” story]

3 Irwin Weinberger { 12.21.11 at 4:20 pm }

I also would like to sell some klez ties and suspenders. The vintage klezmer look is quite retro.

4 Alan Douglass { 12.22.11 at 11:51 am }

I have more stock of that Kleveland Klezmorim LP if you run out.

Also, the audio is still way out-of-sync on that [“Yiddishe Cup”] video. Sorry.

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