Thursday, April 1, 2010

Sherele -- Oy Mame Shein Pickles Chiles and Jrein

Oy Mame Shein Pickles Chiles and Jrein
Sondios y Sabores

(This review is from the April 5, 2010 issue of the Ottawa Jewish Bulletin.)

A few months ago, I was listening to Jazz Around the World (Putumayo), a compilation highlighting bands from many parts of the world, and became fascinated by a tune called “Polka Dot Blues,” played by Sherele, a group from Mexico. It was a kind of snappy Latin jazz tune with some nifty nylon-string guitar playing and a tight, bass and drums rhythm section. But the tune was in a minor key and featured a clarinet as the lead instrument. Sounds like klezmer music, I thought.

Well, it turns out that Sherele is a klezmer quartet based in Mexico, and the tune, composed by clarinetist Nathalie Braux, was the only original composition from their first CD, Oy Mame Shein Pickles Chiles and Jrein. The rest of the album is devoted to their interpretations of traditional klezmer tunes like “Lebedik un Freylekh” and “Reb Dovid’s Ningun,” played with a highly enjoyable blend of Mexican, South American and Eastern European influences.

Sherele’s CD is highly recommended for klezmer fans on the lookout for a unique take on the music.

--Mike Regenstreif

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