Mazal Tov Amigos!
Jews and Popular Music in the Americas

About the Book

Mazal Tov, Amigos! Jews and Popular Music in the Americas seeks to explore the sphere of Jews and Jewishness in the popular music arena in the Americas. It offers a wide-ranging review of new and old trends from an interdisciplinary standpoint, including history, musicology, ethnomusicology, ethnic studies, cultural studies, and even Queer studies. The contribution of Jews to the development of the music industry in the United States, Argentina, or Brazil cannot be measured on a single scale. Hence, these essays seek to explore the sphere of Jews and popular music in the Americas and their multiple significances, celebrating the contribution of Jewish musicians and Jewishness to the development of new musical

Biographical note

Amalia Ran, Ph. D. (2007), Tel Aviv University, is a researcher of Latin American studies. Her publications include: Made of Shores: Judeo Argentinean Fiction Revisited (Lehigh UP, 2011) and the edited volume, Returning to Babel: Jewish Latin American Experiences and Representations (Brill, 2011).

Moshe Morad, Ph. D. (2013), is lecturer at Tel Aviv University and Ono Academic College, broadcaster and director of two music radio stations. His publications include articles, book chapters, and the monograph, Fiesta de diez pesos: Music and Gay Identity in Special Period Cuba (Ashgate, 2014).


Scholars and students in Latin American Studies, Judaic Studies, Ethnomusicology, Popular Music and Culture Studies, and all those interested in the history of popular music in the Americas.

Table of contents:

Introduction, Amalia Ran & Moshe Morad

  1. Is “White Christmas” a Piece of Jewish Music?, Ellen Koskoff
  2. The Musical Worlds of Jewish Buenos Aires, 1910-1940, Pablo Palomino
  3. Tristes Alegrías: The Jewish Presence in Argentina’s Popular Music Arena, Amalia Ran
  4. Jacob de Bandolim: A Jewish(-)Brazilian Composer, Thomas George Caracas García
  5. Walls of Sound: Lieber and Stoller, Phil Spector, the Black-Jewish Alliance, and the “Enlarging” of America, Ari Katorza
  6. Singing from Difference: Jewish Singers-Songwriters in the 1960s and 1970s, Jon Stratton
  7. ¡Toca maravilloso! Larry Harlow and the Jewish Connection to Latin Music, Benjamin Lapidus
  8. Roberto Juan Rodriguez’ “Timba Talmud”: Diasporic Cuban-Jewish Musical Convergences in New York, Nili Belkind
  9. Yiddish Song in Twenty-First Century America: Paths to Creativity, Abigail Wood
  10. Fight for Your Right to Partycipate: Jewish American Rappers, Uri Dorchin
  11. Gypsy, Cumbia, Cuarteto, Surf, Blah Blah Blah: DJ Simja Dujov and Jewish Musical Eclecticism in Argentina,Lilian M. Wohl
  12. Queer Jewish Divas: Jewishness and Queerness in the Life and Performance of Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, and Olga Guillot, Moshe Morad
  13. Third Diaspora Soundscapes: Music of the Jews of Islam in the Americas, Edwin Seroussi

Closing Notes: The Soundstage of Jewish Life, North and South, Judah M. Cohen