Since finishing his album Soft Outfit at the beginning of the year, the quirky, 27-year-old Berkeley-based artist Mark E. Deutsch has made music that is kosher in every sense of the word. Saying shalom to his newborn nephew, Chayim, Deutsch composed an ethereal song cycle called Song for the Sabra, meaning a person born in Israel.
Deutsch's sister listened to the first song, "Hineh," on loop during the birth in April. Translated from Hebrew, the lyrics are simply: "Behold the little sabra. Amen." But it's hardly a lullaby; the baby cries in the third and final song are more avant-garde than sedative. To create the sounds, Deutsch blew into a plastic toy at his Berkeley home, where he records all his music.
His next musical blessing is for his soon-to-be-wed friends. "They asked me to play a set at the wedding, but instead I thought I would lead a karaoke session of love songs," Deutsch said. He intends to make Karaoke an album and perform the covers at other shows. Something tells us that Bryan Adams and Shania Twain won't be included in the set.