While some people might look askance at a klezmer-funk-hip-hop collaboration, world-renowned klezmer clarinetist David Krakauer sees the combination as completely logical. "Funk is the root of hip-hop," he explains, "so you're taking two traditional musics with hip-hop as the common denominator and bringing them together." And they come together in Abraham Inc., a ten-piece group featuring Krakauer; trombonist Fred Wesley, who's known for his work with James Brown; and Socalled, a pioneer in mixing hip-hop and klezmer.
The musicians will perform tonight at the University of Denver's Newman Center for the Performing Arts, where they'll delve into material from their 2010 album, Tweet Tweet, as well as pieces from Wesley's repertoire. Those that are more or less straight funk will be given the Abraham Inc. treatment, while straight klezmer tunes might suddenly break down into funk. "We move between the styles," Krakauer notes, "but I would say that it's a really fun show. There are lots of subtle details and little touches of all kinds.
"We've done a tremendous amount of work on the project, but what comes forth is just a band that loves to play together and loves to have people move and groove to it," he concludes. "So basically, at the end of the day, as Fred would say, 'It's going to be a funky good time.'"
The concert starts at 7:30 p.m. in the Newman Center, 2344 East Iliff Avenue. Tickets run from $33 to $49; for more information, call 303-871-7720.
Sat., Nov. 12, 7:30 p.m., 2011