Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Encounters With Jewish Musical Traditions: Jewish Radio Programs

When I was growing up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, the "Bagels and Lox" and "Kippers 'n' Capers" were two Jewish music radio programs on Sunday mornings available on the fledgling fm channels. (It could have been "am" radio, but I think not.) 

Each offered a smorgasbord of music ranging from recordings of liturgical (Hebrew) and secular songs (Yiddish and Engilsh) of the great cantorial voices such as Yossele RosenblattMoishe OysherJan Peerce to Israel Music Festival winners, the latest pop sensations, such as Alan Sherman, and even a bit of shtick from the likes of "Mollie Goldberg" (aka Gertrude Berg who also had her own radio program, "The Goldbergs"), Belle Barth and Fanny Brice. The usual announcements of local events and a bit of banter between the music filled a half hour easily. Ads were from local restaurants and delis, haberdasheries promoting bar mitzvah wear (Krass Brother Men's Store on South Street was a favorite.), Jewish book and gift shop, etc.

There is nothing to be found online at this writing about this genre of radio. (You try going through the thousands of references to "bagels and lox" online!) It's a real shame.  I will continue to seek out more information in a strategic way, but here's a great sample of the types of music I heard from the Idelsohn Society.