7:30 pm- 9:30 pm Thu, Nov 10, 2011
Black Sabbath with Josh Kun
The Secret Musical History of Black Jewish Relations
a presentation with author, academic and music critic Josh Kun
JCC East Bay, 1414 Walnut St. Berkeley, CA 94709
Advance Ticket Sales: $10 students, seniors and JCC members; $12 general (up to 24 hours in advance)
Door Ticket Prices: $13 students, seniors and JCC members; $15 general (Doors and Box Office open at 7pm.)
Based on the 2010 Idelsohn Society CD compilation Black Sabbath: The Secret Musical History of Black-Jewish Relations, this multimedia presentation with prominent popular music scholar, Josh Kun, explores the musical relationships between African-Americans and Jewish-Americans in the 20th century and the myriad ways they have coalesced, clashed, mobilized, and struggled with each other.
Black Sabbath: The Secret Musical History of Black-Jewish Relations is a musical journey through a unique slice of recording history–the Black-Jewish musical encounter from the 1930s to the 1960s. In contrast to the oft-told story of how Jewish songwriters and publishers of Tin Pan Alley and Broadway transformed Black spirituals, blues, and jazz into the Great American Songbook, scant attention has been paid to the secret history of the many Black responses to Jewish music, life, and culture. From Johnny Mathis singing “Kol Nidre” to Aretha Franklin’s 1960s take on “Swanee,” audiences can learn how Black artists treated Jewish music as a resource for African-American identity, history, and politics.
Josh Kun teaches at the University of Southern California, where he directs The Popular Music Project of the Norman Lear Center. He is the author of Audiotopia: Music, Race, and America (UC Press, 2005), which won a 2006 American Book Award, and the co-author with Roger Bennett of And You Shall Know Us By The Trail Of Our Vinyl: The Jewish Past as Told By the Records We Have Loved and Lost (Random House, 2008).
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