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 Rebecca Toon Henry Meisels  Ed Bouchard  Nancy Emrich Freeman 

 Rebecca Toon

 Henry Meisels

 Ed Bouchard

 Nancy Emrich Freeman

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 Downloadable Photo

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Click to download SCHMALTZ! One-sheet

SCHMALTZ! leads with real interpretive vocal power, add virtuosic accordion, guitar, piano and/or trumpet, and the result is unique and powerful. Applying Chicago’s jazz world to the performance style of the middle of the century New York Yiddish theatre, old standards, and Sephardic and klezmer songs, Schmaltz! rubs songs like And the Angels Sing and Bei Mir Bis du Schoen to a fresh patina with their total of 150 years of music experience.
Rebecca Toon's sensuous vocal and interpretive brilliance is sandwiched between her bright smile and her wickedly fun wit and humor. Henry Meisels sings tenor opera and the Jewish repertoire in ChickenFat Orchestra. Ed Bouchard’s virtuoso Free Bass accordion music has been part of his life through his very long career, mostly in writing and teaching the Alexander Technique. Recently you caught him in the cast of Chicago’s hilarious “We Gotta Bingo.” Josh Nathan’s backbeat banjo and guitar keep both ChickenFat Klezmer Orchestra and SCHMALTZ! On the straight and narrow. Nancy Freeman's string and guitar bass career has spanned show music, bluegrass, orchestras, classic rock, Beatles, and most delightfully and recently, klezmer and Ladino music. In the extended band: Jack Cassidy (trumpet and keys) has toured the world, and recorded /performed with Blues Legend Junior Wells, Van Morrison, Grover Washington Jr., Lou Rawls, Buddy Guy, and more. Radoslav Lorkovic solo touring pianist and accordion player provides class and an amazing keyboard brilliance. He has played on TV and stages with Odetta, Jimmy LaFave, Greg Brown, Richard Shindell, Ellis Paul, Ronny Cox and may more. Michael O’Toole’s career started by studying at the feet of John Prine on guitar and Fleming Brown on banjo. He shares the teaching world of the Old Town School in Chicago with both Jack Cassidy and Rebecca Toon.
Together they bring schmaltz -- to life!

"Music for the soul - played with a relaxed and unpretentious confidence. The music quietly worked through me and I eventually wondered why I felt so happy!"
Iyabo Kwayana, filmmaker