Klezmer supergroup takes the stage at Cain Park
Yiddishe Pirat (“Jewish Pirate” in Yiddish) is an all-star klezmer band, featuring Jack Stratton (of Vulfpeck) on drums; Josh “Socalled” Dolgin on piano, accordion and vocals; and Michael Winograd on clarinet. Yiddishe Pirat will perform on Sunday, June 26, 7 p.m., at the 42nd annual free Yiddish Concert at Cain Park.
The concert is not a Vulfpeck show. (Vulfpeck is a funk-pop band that sold out Madison Square Garden in 2019.) Yiddishe Pirat is a straight-ahead klezmer band. Stratton, its bandleader, said, “Our show at Cain Park will be a klezmer-revival revival, meaning we will mostly play golden moldies from the 1990s klezmer revival.”
The “klezmer revival” was the 1970s–1990s renaissance of Eastern European Jewish instrumental music. The revival was, sort of, a Lower East Side pickle with baby-boomer spices. Yiddishe Pirat is the next step in the klezmer revival, generationally.
Stratton, who lives in Los Angeles, grew up in Cleveland Heights and is an alumnus of the Cain Park Tennis Camp. He first appeared at Cain Park with Yiddishe Cup in 2001, and then with the Josh “Socalled” Dolgin Sextet in 2014.
Clarinetist Winograd, from Brooklyn, N.Y., played with Vulfpeck at Madison Square Garden. Winograd has taught clarinet at klezmer conferences throughout the world and is esteemed for his virtuosity and authenticity, as well as his ability to go outside the boundaries of traditional klezmer. He recently released the album “Kosher Style,” and performs with his band, The Honorable Mentshn. Winograd’s first appearance at Cain Park was in 2010 with the New York-based National Yiddish Folk Theatre—Folksbiene.
Dolgin, from Montreal, is a moviemaker, puppeteer, magician, rapper, hip-hop and klezmer artist. He plays piano and accordion, and sings in English and Yiddish. He has toured extensively with clarinetist David Krakauer’s Klezmer Madness, as well as with Abraham Inc., a klezmer-funk group. Dolgin previously performed at Cain Park in 2004 with Shtreiml, the Montreal klezmer band
The Yiddishe Pirat concert at Cain Park is free. Tickets are not necessary. Simply show up prior to 7 p.m. on Sunday, June 26, for the show at the Evans Amphitheater in Cain Park.
Bert Stratton, of Cleveland Heights, is the leader of Yiddishe Cup, and is Jack Stratton's father. He writes the blog "Klezmer Guy."