Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Cool songs 2: Isaac Bashevis Singer

(This is another P.S. to this post, with all the biographical tracks from Vinyl Villain and some tenuously Jew-ish music from Ribot, Kutiman etc.)

Featuring: "Isaac Bashevis Singer" by The Owls

This is in a lovely New York playlist from the great Motel de Moka.

Said the Gramophone, writing on Erev Xmas '07, wrote:
Isaac Bashevis Singer: author, humourist, Nobel Laureate, Jew. Were he still with us he would probably be doing the same thing as I'm doing on this Christmas Eve: noshing on mixed nuts, Ferrero Rochers, waiting at a loved-one's house for a matriarch to return with some cabbage rolls. It's a good life.

But one of the things I like to do with this song, this tender portrait, is to disconnect it from the "real" Isaac Bashevis Singer, the I.B.S. known and beloved, and instead to give the song to an anonymous Isaac: one who aged and died in NYC without ever becoming famous, who smiled and shook his head whenever he read an article about the famous writer who shares his name. Our Isaac, this gentle bachelor who works as a watchmaker or a newspaper seller or a watercolourist, this guy too has a wide circle of friends, has lady callers and superstitions and on Christmas Day he throws a feast for all his cherished ones, gentiles and Jews and a solitary Hindu, serving fruitcake and gefilte fish, kosher wine and Austrian bubbly, Ferrero Rochers and mixed nuts. And his turntable never stops spinning.

[buy Daughters and Suns, absolutely the most diverse & pretty a group of pop-songs you'll hear before the end of the year]

Links: The Owls web page, The Owls at Magic Mark Records, Isaac Bashevis Singer: American Master. Image above from Findagrave.

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