AJ Presents Bluegrass with Jewish Sass Featuring Mike Stein

The community is invited to Bluegrass with Jewish Sass, Congregation Adath Jeshurun’s annual Music Festival, on Sunday, March 3, at 7 p.m.

A number of years ago the Cantors Assembly had a convention in Los Angeles. Among the many talents of the West coast was a family of musicians, the Stein Family.

At the time the Rolling Steins consisted of Mike, his wife Kelley and three teenage sons (now all accomplished musicians in their own right) and they played an eclectic stew of jazz, klez and bluegrass for my colleagues and me.

I was struck by many things – the fact that Mike himself plays four or five instruments was the least of them. More than the raw talent exhibited by the ensemble was the cohesiveness of the sound and the good feeling that emanated from their collaboration.

I was reminded of Mike’s talent when the Cantors Assembly took its mission to Poland and Israel three years ago. For those who saw the film 100 Voices, there was a 20-minute prologue, a concert played on the Fourth of July 2009 in Krakow, which began with a melismatic, bluegrass fiddle riff by none other than Hazzan Stein.

A world renowned performer, composer and recording artist, a Grammy Award winner and nominee, his songs have been recorded by the late Patsy Montana and have been in movies such as The Little Traitor.

I’m not the only one who noticed his fiddle playing – he’s played for Mary Chapin Carpenter and Tom Paxton. Today he is the cantor at Temple Aliyah in Woodland Hills, CA.

Since it’s been a year or so too long since we’ve had John Gage and a Kentucky Homefront Radio show from our bimah, I thought bringing out a Bluegrass fiddler and singer to Louisville was a great reason to invite him back; and it was perfectly timed for this March on a night when we wouldn’t be competing with University of Louisville basketball!

John will be bringing his guitar along to share a song or two from “the front porch” during the show. Cantor Sharon Hordes of Keneseth Israel and a community choir, adult and junior, will join the fun as we celebrate Bluegrass with Jewish Sass.

Tickets are available for purchase online at http://www.adathjeshurun.com, by phone at 458-5359 or at the AJ office during business hours. Advance tickets are $12.50 for adults and $10 for seniors and students. Tickets will also be sold at the door for $15 each. Sponsorships are available.

Don’t miss the fun (or the dessert from Bonnie’s Baking Bunch following).

[by Cantor David Lipp]
Congregation Adath Jeshurun

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