Monday, May 10th 2021   |

Music

James Levine, cantor’s grandson who led the Metropolitan Opera for 40 years, is dead at 77

By ANDREW SILOW-CARROLL

(JTA) — James Levine, the grandson of a cantor who led New York’s Metropolitan Opera as artistic director for more than 40 years, has died.

The cause of death was not announced, although Levine had been in ill health for years. He was 77 and passed away on March 9.

Levine was one of the dominant figures in opera and American classical music until being fired in...

The Jewish highlights of the 2021 Grammys: Breakout performance but no win for Jewish sister act Haim

By EMILY BURACK

(JTA) — When the Jewish sister act Haim took the stage at the 2021 Grammy Awards on Sunday night, Americans began googling “hime.”

That’s how host Trevor Noah pronounced the group’s name, which is the last name of the sisters and the Hebrew word for life. Though the sisters did not win in either of the categories in which they were nominated, they celebrated their friend Taylor...

Phil Spector, convicted murderer, rock legend, dies at 81

(JTA) — Phil Spector, the massively influential rock composer and producer who murdered a woman and spent his declining years in jail, died at 81.

Spector died Saturday at a hospital in French Camp, California of COVID 19 complications, the New York Times quoted his daughter, Nicole Audrey Spector, as saying.

Spector was born into a Jewish family in the Bronx. His father committed suicide when Spector was 8 years...

Sylvain Sylvain, Jewish guitarist for the influential band New York Dolls, has died at 69

(JTA) — Sylvain Sylvain, a guitarist best known for anchoring the influential 1970s band the New York Dolls after his Jewish family left Egypt because of rising anti-Semitism, has died at 69.

His Facebook page announced the news Thursday night. The rocker had been battling an unspecified form of cancer.

He was born Sylvain Mizrahi to a Syrian Jewish family in Cairo in 1951. But his family left during the...

Dave Grohl, the Foo Fighters singer, is pumping out covers of songs by Jewish artists for Chanukah

By GABE FRIEDMAN

(JTA) — Dave Grohl, who is best known as the leader of the 12-time Grammy winning band Foo Fighters, isn’t Jewish. But he’s having a lot of musical fun this Chanukah.

Grohl teamed up with the Grammy-winning Jewish producer Greg Kurstin, who has worked with the Foo Fighters, to record eight covers of songs by famous Jewish artists, one for each night of the holiday. “Festival of...

WATCH: Daveed Diggs’ new ‘Puppy for Hanukkah’ song

(JTA) — There’s a long history of Jewish artists releasing parody songs for Hanukkah, but this year’s most catchy addition to the holiday canon may be Daveed Diggs’ new rap, “Puppy for Hanukkah.”

The song — about a kid hoping to receive a puppy as a present — is set against a klezmer-style clarinet melody and includes a recitation of the blessing over the menorah.

“I don’t know what it...

2021 Grammy Awards: All the Jewish nominees, from Haim to an orchestral ‘Diary of Anne Frank’ adaptation

By EMILY BURACK

(JTA) — This year’s Grammy Awards will almost certainly be different from past years, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. But despite the lack of details surrounding the ceremony, it’s still taking place, and as usual, several Jewish artists made the nominations list, which was announced Tuesday.

Ranging all the way from the sister rock band Haim to comedian Tiffany Haddish, these are the Jewish artists...

Prince and the Jews: The late rock star’s best Jewish friend tells all in new memoir

By STEPHEN SILVER

(JTA) — In the late 1960s, when Neal Karlen was not even 10 years old, he would spend time at the home of his grandparents, one of the few Jewish families that remained on the north side of Minneapolis. Karlen would play basketball and ride bikes with a group of African-American kids who lived in the neighborhood. One of them, he later realized, was a young Prince...

YouTube removes rapper Wiley’s channel over ‘repeated violations’

(JTA) — YouTube is the latest media platform to remove Wiley over what it termed the British rapper’s “repeated violations.”

The decision to remove his channel comes after pressure by groups in the United Kingdom, including the Campaign Against Antisemitism.

Wiley was removed late last month from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram following a series of tweets widely regarded as anti-Semitic and other social media posts.

Last week YouTube, which is...

UK rapper Wiley goes on anti-Semitic Twitter rant, gets dropped by Jewish manager

(JTA) — The influential British rapper Wiley posted a series of anti-Semitic messages on Twitter on Friday, spurring a wave of outrage and prompting his Jewish manager to cease representing him.

Among his comments were “I don’t care about Hitler, I care about black people” and “There are 2 sets of people who nobody has really wanted to challenge #Jewish & #KKK but being in business for 20 years you...