Klezmokum:  “Klez-Evergreens Project Extended”  2015-2016

This year Klezmokum celebrates our 27 years of performances and 9 recordings!   By popular demand, we decided to extend our “Klez-Evergreens” project of 2015 with many new pieces added for the current concert season: 2016.  Klezmokum and Klez-Edge (our quartet instrumental version of the band) have a wealth of material during our many years of existence which deserves greater listening and performances for the public.. Some of these pieces were only performed a few times and I’ve been re-arranging them in a new format for this time.  In addition I’ve discovered some great music by composers that use Jewish modes (scales) that I’ve also arranged for this new project including  the poignant film piece Theme from Schindler’s List by John Williams, a new composition entitled Indian-Judaic Song based on a lovely theme by jazz composer Wayne Shorter, the new Jews & Gypsies Suite II, (a follow up from the first Jews & Gypsies Suite--from our Le Dor Va Dor CD recording in 2000), modern arrangements of songs from Fiddler On the Roof , and great song standards from Harold Arlen (Hyman Arluk).  Added to the program will be modern version of the classic klezmer pieces Yikhes (Ancestors-1911) Yiddish Blues (1919),  Flatbush (Brooklyn) Waltz by klezmer composer Andy Statman, and classic klezmer dance pieces like Araber Tants, Bolter Bulgar, and Bay a Glezele Mashke. Included will be a recent composition and title track of our new CD:  The Struggle Can Be Enobling.  Held over from the first project will be my compositions Spring Freylekhs, Russian Roots, the traditional Ketsad M’rakdin, and the Chassidic piece Zhuritze Chlopotzi (A Jewish Soul classic!)  This has proven to be a program of broad spectrum, with a wide variety of musical colors, contrasts, and rhythms inspired by many cultures with links to Judaism!..  As the great Dr. Martin Luther King once stated: “It’s either one world or no world.”

Klez-Edge is :
Klez-Edge is :
Alex Coke (Austin Texas / Amsterdam)—Saxophones and Flute 
Larry Fishkind (New York / Amsterdam)—Tuba
Roberto Haliffi (Tripoli Libya /Amsterdam)—Drums
Burton Greene (Chicago / Amsterdam)—Piano, Compositions and Arrangements

Concerts Scheduled in 2016:
Our concert tour in 2015 included concerts in Etty Hillesum Center in Deventer Holland;  Sinai Centrum concerts in Amsterdam South and Amstelveen;  Festival:  Days of Jewish Culture in Chemnitz, Germany;  Apeldoorn, Zwolle, and LJG Amsterdam Synagogue concerts.  This year the tour has been extended with concerts in Merkaz in Utrecht, the Portugese Synagogue and the Pianola Museum in Amsterdam, Sinai Centrum concerts, the Ruigoord Community,  and Museumhoeve Overslot in Egmond a/d Hoef.  Some of this has been recorded together with an interview for a forthcoming film produced by Salto TV in Holland. 

For further information and concert bookings please contact:

Antonet Kooi     p.kooi5@chello.nl    tel. 31 (0)55-5416422  or

Burton Greene  greeneburton@cs.com   tel. 31 (0)20-6250087

Our History: 
Klezmokum was formed in 1989 by composer, pianist, arranger Burton Greene together with clarinetist Marcel Salomon—who has been “steeped lifelong” in Jewish cultural music. Klezmokum comes from klezmer, combined with the word “Mokum”, which means ‘place’ and is the old Jewish name for Amsterdam. Quite early tuba player Larry Fishkind joined the band and North African percussionist Roberto Haliffi. After Marcel Salomon left to pursue more traditional directions with his duo, clarinetist Michael Moore joined the band, followed by clarinetist Perry Robinson and Hans Mekel on tarragot, alto sax and clarinet. For several years we worked with either Akos Laki or Stanislav Mitrovic from Hungary and former Yugoslavia on clarinet and saxes. More recently recently we had Lior Kuperberg from Tel Aviv, Israel, on soprano and tenor saxophones. And to complete the ensemble we have had two multi-talented vocalists: Patricia Beysens and Marek Balata. Patricia also plays flügelhorn and often does the band's artwork. Marek has over a 3 octave vocal range and can sound like a synagogue cantor one moment, and scat like Bobbie McFerrin the next! To listen to Klezmokum is to travel around the globe through traditional Jewish cultures, to enter a past world and then return through the rhythmic vitality and spontaneity of improvised jazz into present time reality. “We are not trying to recreate the museum.”

Of note have been the performances at Bimhuis in Amsterdam, Middle Europe Festival (Germany), the Knitting Factory—5 Annual Avant Klezmer Festivals in New York, Amiens Jazz Festival (France), Opera House in Leipzig, North Sea Jazz Festival (Holland), Klezmokum at Klez-MORE Festival in Vienna, Austria (2004), and many more. Between 1992 and 2006 BV Haast in Amsterdam produced 6 CD’s of Klezmokum and Klez-thetics (an instrumental quartet version of Klezmokum). We have two CD’s recorded for Tzadik Records in New York: The first Klez-Edge CD: “Ancestors, Mindreles, Na Gila Monsters” (2008), and a intimate, intense duo CD with myself and Perry Robinson on Tzadik entitled "Two Voices In the Desert" (2009).  After that we produced our 2012 recording "Where We Come From.. Where We're Going" for the Music & Words label.