Who We Are...
David Asman, clarinetist and founder, started the KlezBros in 1993, twenty years after leaving the hills of New Jersey for the mountains of Salt Lake City. Playing the clarinet since he was nine, his classical and jazz training set the table for what became his passion, klezmer. David's active involvement in Salt Lake's Jewish community, both with the synagogue (Congregation Kol Ami) and Jewish Community Center, set up opportunities for the KlezBros that continue to be developed right up to the present.
Steve Keen is an original member of The KlezBros, developing the group in 1993 with David. Originally from Baltimore, Maryland, Steve attended Georgia Tech, then found his way to Utah in 1971, where he graduated from Westminster College with a degree in Music and from the University of Utah with a degree in Psychology. Along with the piano accordion and the diatonic button accordion, Steve is an accomplished jazz pianist and bassist and teaches jazz piano for the University of Utah and Westminster College. His musical acumen is demonstrated in several original compositions that can be heard on our CD. In addition to The KlezBros he currently plays in several ethnic music groups The Salzburger Echo and Idlewild. Steve's other passions include photography, wheel-thrown pottery and word working. He currently has an ebay business making a specialty printing device for photographers and continues to freelance as a professional musician in many different settings. His own website is stephenkeenphotography.com.
...And What We Play
The Yiddish word 'klezmer' comes from two Hebrew words, 'kli' and 'zemer', meaning instrument or vessel of song. First and foremost, klezmer is Jewish wedding music. It is also performed at other simchas (joyous events) such as bar/bat mitzvahs, and for the festive Jewish holidays of Simchat Torah, Hanukkah and Purim. Klezmer music, originally associated with the instrumental music of the Eastern European Jewish community, is strongly influenced by local cultures, and constantly evolving. The music continually takes on new dimensions, through the use of non-traditional instruments, and the creative integration of atypical styles. The KlezBros continue that tradition.