First time I ever heard Socalled was few hours before Calgary Folk Festival opened its doors to public. Josh Dolgin (Socalled) and his guests were testing microphones on the main stage. Microphones worked and I was instantly hypnotized by the unique mix of rhythms, energies and hilarious lyrics. I wanted to hear more, but they kept playing the same song over and over again. “Work With What You Got” – its rap, its fun and I could not help but dance and wonder why I had never heard or seen this awesomeness before.
You can listen to this masterpiece here. As I found out later, while interviewing Josh, this song has been number 1 for over 6 weeks on Montreal BandeApart (Band of Outsiders) radio station. (and yes, I Had to talk to the guy, just posting pictures would not be enough to describe the talent of this genius).
Socalled is Montreal-based musician, known as Klezmer/hip-hop hybrid artist. He is famous for using Jewish folk music and giving it an odd unique twist of his own, be it soul, funk or hip-hop, creating unforgetable blend of different cultures and generations.
It is hard to define what he does, as he seems to be doing everything and everywhere. He is a musician, producer, composer, rapper, journalist, photographer, filmmaker and magician! He taught master classes in music festivals and performed all around the world. When I asked him what was his favourite place, he said he really liked Odessa (after all his grandfather is from Ukraine), but his favourite place to live is Montreal, Quebec. In all his travels, I noticed he has not performed in Israel, so I asked why, as he and his music seem so jewish. His immediate response was “..too jewish for Israel”, which I thought was hilarious. I personally think he is perfect for Israel!
Even the movie has been produced about him by the National Film Board of Canada. ”The Socalled Movie”, documentary about Socalled tours all over the world, the records he’s been making and his creative ways. The movie takes place in Ukraine on the first “Klezmer Cruise”, in which a boatload of klezmer (yiddish culture) fans sail down the Dnepr River.
Check out more about Socalled and listen to his music on his webpage and see how much you like it!!
Here is my favourite video: (These are) The Good Old Days
Here is Socalled with his friends , performing at Calgary Folk Music Festival July 2011.
P.S. this is the most awesome photo I took after our interview.