A Still Mind | Bands

I'm often asked why I didn't choose a more convenient (i.e. smaller) instrument to carry around. I don't know why I was initially attracted to the string bass, but it seems to suit me and I've been playing it for over 30 years. I grew up learning and playing classical music, and a little bit of jazz. I have since expanded into folk, bluegrass, klezmer, old-time, musicals/opera, chanting, and other spiritual music; and I have rediscovered my interest and talent for singing. I currently perform regularly in the Klezmer band Freylach Time! and irregularly in contra dance, bluegrass, folk, chanting, and other groups. Klezmer is Jewish Folk music from eastern Europe that came to the U.S. and grew up alongside Jazz in the early twentieth century.

Freylach Time! is one of the most popular Klezmer bands in North Carolina. Formed in Durham in 1998, the core trio is Riki Friedman on Clarinet, Mike McQuown on Accordion, and myself on String Bass. We sometimes feature Karen Kumin and Leslie Tobin on vocals and Lori Baron on percussion. We perform for concerts, festivals, and private events (weddings, bar/bat-mitzvot, birthday parties, etc.) throughout North Carolina and the southeast. Our style is true to the Klezmer tradition, influenced by the recent Klezmer revival. Never ones to take ourselves too seriously, we sometimes join with Christine Westfall on fiddle to become the Freylach Old-Time Jamboree, performing medleys of Klezmer tunes and Old-Time tunes. Our CD has received high praise from the Klezmer Shack. and is available from CDBaby For booking information, contact Riki Friedman (919) 698-2813. 

Freylach Old Time Jamboree performs at Centerfest in Durham, North Carolina. A dedicated group of fans disregarded the rain and broke into a wonderful impromptu "interpretive dance." This is one of my favorite medleys; listen to yours truly sing a "Jewgrass" version of "Little Liza Jane."

Freylach Time! at the first anniversary of the Marry Durham Festival in Durham, North Carolina. The event celebrates peoples' commitment to the city--to keep it clean and safe, to support local businesses, and to care about one's neighbors. The microphone on the camera used to record the video unfortunately did not pick up the sound of the bass at all.

Freylach Old-Time performs for the 2010 Beaver Queen Pageant at Fullsteam Brewery in Durham, North Carolina. As with the video above, the microphone does not pick up the bass. To hear me, come to one of our shows!


Find out about our upcoming events, and more about my chants: