O Little Town of East New York

October 17, 1995 | Compact Disc

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O Little Town of East New York combines narrative spoken-word text with evocative background music, both echoing the Jewish experience in a working-class section of Brooklyn. The combination of storytelling and electronic music is reminiscent of the work of Laurie Anderson, but Shelley Hirsch's storytelling lacks Anderson's dry humor or sense of irony. This semi-autobiographical work is deeply personal. While at times it seems to mimic those tired recollections that an unpopular relative might offer up again and again at the family dinner table, Hirsch does a good job of presenting not only her own family history, but the history of her neighborhood -- its poverty, changing racial climate, diversity, sounds, and smells as well as the hopes of the people around her. Hirsch stretches herself now and again on this album, with unusual samples and altered voices; the result mostly works well. ~ Stacia Proefrock

Format: Compact Disc

Released Date: October 17, 1995

Number of Discs: 1

Stereo/Mono: Stereo

UPC: 702397710424

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O Little Town of East New York

O Little Town of East New York

Format: Compact Disc

Released Date: October 17, 1995

Number of Discs: 1

Stereo/Mono: Stereo

UPC: 702397710424


See artistic credits for this CD
Title Track Time
1.On the far reaches --
2.544 Hemlock Street --
3.Marcia Baskin --
4.Hymie and Harry --
5.Claire --
6.I put on shows --
7.Killing the ants --
8.Singing with Johnny --
9.Street fair --
10.Bongos --
11.Mrs. McIntyre/Chrysler Building --
12.Mrs. McIntyre/Bananas --
13.Aida Vidzer (I liked her) --
14.The Aida Song --
15.Aida's house --
16.Electric menorah --
17.The Jewish people --
18.Chant --
19.Maria Finchenko/Highland Park --
20.Maria's father --
21.Maria's house/The troika --
22.Confession booth --
23.Slap the shit --
24.Grandma Gertie --
25.Rhapsody --
26.The new house --
27.625 Hemlock Street --
28.Dipped --
29.Songs in my head --
30.Vinnie Russo --
31.Sliced open --
32.Franklin K. Lane/I worked my ass off --
33.Hush, my darling --
34.Marsha Calabro --
35.Outro --

Editorial Notes

O Little Town of East New York combines narrative spoken-word text with evocative background music, both echoing the Jewish experience in a working-class section of Brooklyn. The combination of storytelling and electronic music is reminiscent of the work of Laurie Anderson, but Shelley Hirsch's storytelling lacks Anderson's dry humor or sense of irony. This semi-autobiographical work is deeply personal. While at times it seems to mimic those tired recollections that an unpopular relative might offer up again and again at the family dinner table, Hirsch does a good job of presenting not only her own family history, but the history of her neighborhood -- its poverty, changing racial climate, diversity, sounds, and smells as well as the hopes of the people around her. Hirsch stretches herself now and again on this album, with unusual samples and altered voices; the result mostly works well. ~ Stacia Proefrock
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