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Wednesday, November 03, 2004


I spoke with Lenny Solomon tonight. He's releasing a new Shlock Rock album, and this one will have 4 songs that were originally released on his Kesher albums. I asked him to name them for me, and as he got to "Veneemar," I drew a blank. So he sang it for me. And I got a sudden flashback of my first Kesher concert.

I joined Kesher in 1985 when bassist Joey Friedman left the band. My first gig was a huge concert at Brooklyn College. We opened for Country Yossi and the Shteeble Hoppers, and I remember bragging to my future wife that Mitch the Shteeble Hopper gave me a lift home.

Kesher was a serious band. There wasn't much in the way of stage antics. We played the songs. We had to wear these matching argyle sweaters. I remember that this was one of the biggest concerts I had ever played. More than 2400 people. I learned all of the bass parts directly off the albums, and had one rehearsal with Lenny prior to the show. The keyboardist from Kabbalah gave me a lift to the show, and got a flat tire for his reward.

We opened with Moshe Shur's "Hafachta," and I remember we started with a "bang." A real smash of symbols and guitar, then launched into the song. We did a bunch of Kesher songs, straight off the albums. Lenny was hidden behind a stack of keyboards. You could sort of make him out between the upper and lower ones. Lenny and drummer Zvi were very tight and right on key with the vocals.

One of the last songs we played was "Veneemar." A standard, medium rock balad at the time. Lenny says he rerecorded it and it sounds different. I can't wait to hear it again.


Mindy said...

You were in Lenny's band? COOL!

PsychoToddler said...

I was in 2 of Lenny's bands. Well actually 3 if you count KGB.

jah said...

I saw Kesher when Joey was still playing. We were doing a double bill at an NCSY Shabbaton in Atlantic Seaboard Region (I was with Ruach) . Joey wanted to show everyone that they were a real Rock and Roll Band, so he wore his leather jacket and leather spiked wrist bands. Needless to say, the Rabbis were pissed.
Perhaps that's where the Argyle sweaters came from.

PsychoToddler said...

Yes, Joey was an awesome bass player. Good singer too. What is it with these bass players who form Jewish Rock Bands and then suddenly vanish into obscurity in the midwest?

Oh I know, they get all the hot midwestern women.

jah said...

Since I played at Joey's wedding, I cna vouch. I think I am still hung over from what was essentially a three day bender in Memphis.

Anonymous said...

"Vanish into obscurity..." Hardly. He is an unindicted co-conspirator in the massive WexTrust fraud and will hopefully soon vanish into the bowels of a Federal penal institution. Perhaps he will take up the flute?

Anonymous said...

Very old post, I know...but found it searching for what became of Kesher, and hey!

I was at that concert as a kid. I still have a scratchy cassette recording of the concert, hafachta and all.