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January 2017

Guest Post: From Punk Rocker to Rabbi

The following guest post is by Rabbi Patrick. Rabbi Patrick is in Oy Oy Oy Gevalt! Jews and Punk in Chapter 3, as the front man of CAN!!CAN, and Chapter 6, as the executive director of PunkTorah. Here he explains how lessons from being a touring punk rocker helped him as a rabbi. Living in a Dodge conversion van was great preparation for being a rabbi. Seriously. Mind you, I had no interest in being clergy at the time. I was the…

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10-Year Anniversary: The Heebie-Jeebies at CBGB’s

In October 2006, Steven Lee Beeber’s The Heebie-Jeebies at CBGB’s: A Secret History of Jewish Punk was published. While both that book and Oy Oy Oy Gevalt! Jews and Punk featured the Ramones and the Dictators, Beeber included original interviews with key people involved with both bands. He also painted a much more comprehensive picture of the 1970s New York proto-punk/punk scene as well as other important figures, with chapters on Lou Reed, Jonathan Richman, Richard Hell, Suicide, Lenny Kaye (Patti Smith Group), Chris…

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Nederlandsch-Israëlietisch: Tracing a Sliver of Family History in Rotterdam, Holland

In 1921, my great-grandparents were emigrating from Russia to the United States. On April 1, when the ship was docked in Rotterdam, Holland, my maternal grandfather, Max Schwartz, was born. On April 8, he had his bris in Rotterdam. Twenty-three days after he was born, they reached the U.S. He wasn’t a Dutch citizen, he never identified as Dutch, and he never had any desire to return. He’s the only one of my grandparents not born in the U.S., even…

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