Keren’s hit with critics
Jewish Telegraph, May 2005
ISRAEL-born Keren Ann Zeidel is the new darling of the music press.
The 30-year-old singer-songwriter has been getting rave reviews for her new album, Nolita (EMI).
Keren Ann has a really mixed background. Her father is Russian-Israeli while her mother is Javanese-Dutch. Nolita is Paris-based Keren Ann’s fourth album — but only her second English language release. Her first US album, Not Going Anywhere, was a huge hit with critics.
She recorded her new album in New York in Nolita (North of Little Italy). The album was delayed when she tore ligaments in her thumb. But she used this to her advantage when she bought a keyboard and programming equipment.
While the original guitar parts remain, they are embellished with cello, violin and trumpet parts.
Of earlier album La Disparition, Keren Ann said: “My mother’s of Catholic origin and my father’s a Jew — and I actually feel that now for the first time in my life I’ve finally understood where I come from.
“Catholicism and Judaism can exist side by side. La Disparition has a lot to do with my Yiddish side too. It reflects the ‘Judeo’ side of the Judeo-Christian education I had if you like. In the ‘Judeo’ side of things you don’t have to organise a special ceremony or anything to talk about death. And that’s a very Jewish, very Yiddish take on things.