None of these peoples want bombs to be sent.

In July 2012, I had the privilege of meeting the great clarinetist and instrumental soloist of Klezmer music, Giora Feidman, in Bad Staffelstein, Upper Franconia. After his impressive performance at „Songs on a Summer Evening,“ which had enchanted both me and about 5,000 other visitors at the festival in the meadow in front of Banz Abbey, we arranged to have breakfast the next morning at his hotel. The sound of his clarinet still resonated deeply within me, a testament to his extraordinary ability to captivate his audience.

Giora Feidman, often referred to as the „King of Klezmer,“ was born on March 25, 1936, in Buenos Aires. Today, more than eight decades later, Feidman continues to enjoy an impressive career and still fills large concert halls worldwide. This conversation, which now took place twelve years ago, remains in my memory as a valuable and insightful exchange that provided a deep insight into the creation and impact of an extraordinary musician.

Read an excerpt from my interview with Giora Feidman here:

HMV: Giora Feidman, what is a song?

GIORA FEIDMAN: “Should one allow music to be used for political purposes?“ It’s a prayer! … So, divide a song into two or three parts. One is the music, one is the words. – Look, that guy yesterday, who was it …? – Wecker, right? …

I don’t understand the words. My friends say his words talk about politics. – They talk about politics! Should one allow music to be used for political purposes? – I don’t think so! You listen to this music; I don’t understand the language, so I can’t understand the song. I’ve listened to two or three songs and it seems to me they were all the same. That’s why I asked Ms. Springer [Giora Feidman’s companion, HMV]. I know that these people can have an influence on society. I say no, they will have no influence on German society, none at all! – Not them! They will neither overthrow the government nor will they set anything in motion. Again, why does he talk about values? It’s right, maybe it’s right that this group in society is not fair, that this isn’t fair or that isn’t. Maybe that’s right. But do they change anything? This way, nothing is moved! The question is, what is this! Art? – I am objective, I don’t understand the language. I want to record the music! – But I can’t! … Something great these guys, this guy and his colleague, have.

Read the full interview with Giora Feidman here.