Thursday, October 21, 2010

Remember Neil Sedaka? At 71, He's Still Singing, In Tel Aviv

Neil Sedaka, the Sephardi pop singing sensation of the 1950's and 1960's, hasn't stopped singing even though his career began to decline with the arrival of the Beatles.

Last Saturday night, the 71-year-old Brooklyn native sang in concert at the Nokia Auditorium in Tel Aviv, his first appearance in Israel in 46 years.  A musical based on his life and songs opened in London a few months ago, and may find its way to Broadway.  Sedaka (the name is a variant of the Hebrew word Tzedaka - charity) is a cousin of singer Eydie Gorme.

David Brinn reviewed Sedaka's performance in the Jerusalem Post, writing:
He could do no wrong with the audience, and when, late in the show, he performed solo renditions of My Yiddishe Mama and Vi Ahin Zol Ikh Geyn with its lines about the Promised Land, “for at least I’m free, no more wander for me,” they responded with a standing ovation.

Entertainer became a dirty word somewhere along the line in the rock era, but there’s something to be said for sheer, unadulterated entertainment, when it’s performed as impeccably and professionally as Neil Sedaka does it.
To get an updated view of this 60 million record seller, here's a video of him performing My Yiddishe Mama on the Chabad telethon last year.  Enjoy!

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