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November 23, 1990 - Image 73

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1990-11-23

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

ENTERTAINMENT

WHAT'S THE RAP
ON THESE 2 LIVE JEWS?

Two young men from Miami, a record producer and
a stand-up comic are "As Kosher As They Wanna Be."

RON OSTROFF

Special to The Jewish. News

W

hen Joe Stone and
Eric Lambert get
old, in about 60
years, they'll have all the
right moves.
Since August, the Miami
duo has practiced being ger-
iatric for professional rea-
sons. With two and one-half
hours of makeup each, Mr.
Stone, a 25-year-old record
producer, and Mr. Lambert,
a 27 - year - old stand - up comic,
transform themselves into
83-year-olds Easy Irving
(Stone) and MC Moisha
(Lambert).
The result: 2 Live Jews —
probably the world's oldest
rappers, with a distinctly
Jewish flavor.
The two men had been
friends for two years. They
wanted to work together,
but were waiting for the
right idea. Then a federal
judge in Florida ruled that
black rap group 2 Live
Crew's "Nasty As They
Wanna Be" album was ob-
scene. (A federal jury has
since decided otherwise.)
The judge's ruling made
headlines and the conversa-
tion at a regular Sunday card
game that included Mr. Stone
and Mr. Lambert.
"We said '2 Live Crew,'
they aren't Jewish rappers,
are they?" Mr. Lambert
recalled recently. "No. But
how about 2 Live Jews?"
A week later — with hard-
ly any sleep in between —
they'd completed an album
"2 Live Jews, As Kosher As
They Wanna Be."
The album, on the Kosher
Records label created for the
occasion, runs from corny
jokes and biting satire to an-
ti-drug and pro-education
messages and "Hatikvah"
to a rap beat.

And after so many inter-
views and performances
(they'll be at Hammerjacks
Nov. 2), the comics and their
characters tend to flow to-
gether.
During a recent telephone
interview from Miami, the
comedy team rapidly took
turns answering questions

and going in and out of
character.
"I'm thanking God that
everyone is buying the al-
bum," said Mr. Stone in the
heavy European Jewish ac-
cent of Easy Irving.
The comedy album, that
neither thought would be a
hit, has already sold over
100,000 copies and made the
top 200 chart in Billboard
magazine
It's also started a little
controversy.
One song, entitled "J.A.P.
Rap," tells the story of an
empty-headed, credit card-
laden "Jewish American
Princess."
"Jewish American Prin-
cess spends money all the
time. -
"Jewish American Prin-
cess, I love to hear her
whine."
The Anti-Defamation

"We would walk
around Miami
Beach and Just
watch these people
and listen to them.
And if we'd notice a
really good
character, we
would study them."

—Eric Lambert

League has gotten some
complaints. But the team
said its intent was purely
comic.
"When we did that we
didn't expect this album to
be a hit," said Mr. Lambert.
"It was done about a friend
of Joe's. She suggested it.
And she thought it was
hilarious."
But maybe the critics
should listen to the song's
opening before complaining.
"This song is not about all
Jewish women," Easy Irv-
ing begins.
"That's right," MC
Moisha adds. "Just the
ones we're talking about."
"J.A.P. bashing is repre-
hensible," Mr. Lambert
said. "We didn't know about
that [when they wrote the

song]. We hold Jewish wo-
men in high esteem."
With the tune "Shake
Your Tuchas," they try to
teach listeners a little
Yiddish — from meshuganer
("kind of nuts") to kibbitz
("it's talk") and kvetching
("complaining").
The song from the album
that's gotten play on radio
stations has been "Oy, It's
So Humid," which bears
some resemblance to a 2
Live Crew song about
searching for sex.
In the 2 Live Jews ver-
sion, Moisha and Irving
aren't searching for women.
They're-looking for a place
to get away from the Miami
heat.
"Walking back to the ho-
tel from the bagel shop.
"It was so damn humid,
hair was almost like a mop.
"I was sweating like a
mule. I was frying like a
blintz."
Then there's the chorus by
a whiny Jewish woman.
"Oy, it's so humid
"Oy, it's so humid
"Oy, it's so humid
"It's like a sauna in here."
Of this song, there's even
a video. It made the MTV
news and other video chan-
nels are playing it.
"But they don't know
quite where to put it," Mr.
Stone said. "It's rap. But
it's not rap."
On the cut, "Young Jews
Be Proud," the elderly two-
some gives the latest gener-
ation a lesson in history and
ethnic pride.
"Never forget what your
people went through to get
you here," an old father says
to his son, who is a father
himself.
"To every corner of the
world, you can trace our
tears...
"You are the nation of our
fathers, young Jews be
proud"
The guys insisted that
their album is not knocking
old people. They said it's
almost an appreciation of
them.
Although the album was
quickly done, the characters
had been in development for
a while.

The comedy team of Lambert and Stone has created rap music with a
Jewish flavor.

"My character developed
over years of observations,"
Mr. Stone said. "We went to
the beach to pick up some of
the nuances, styles and
movements of the elderly.
And we recalled certain
aunts and uncles and other
older Jews with heavy Eu-
ropean accents."
"We would walk around
Miami Beach and just watch
these people and listen to
them," Mr. Lambert said.
"And if we'd notice a really
good character, we would
study them. But there was a
great deal of similarity.
They were among the hap-
piest and friendliest people
we had ever seen."
On the album's cover is a
dowdy older woman in a
bathing suit, walking past
the drooling octogenarians.
"That is a very nice wom-
an, who was kind enough to
help us out," said Mr. Stone.
"We got her off Miami
Beach. And we paid her."
When an album is made in
a week, the ideas fly fast and
furious. And many of them
just don't make the cut.
The chorus of one of the
songs briefly had been "Oy,
it's so humid. Oy, it's so
humid. It's like an oven in
here," said Mr. Stone

The two comics said they
looked at each other and re-
membered their friends
whose parents were Holo-
caust survivors.
"No, we can't say that,"
Mr. Stone said they decided.
" 'How about steambath?'
So we settled on sauna."
Although this is their first
album as a team, Mr. Stone
has been in the record busi-
ness for nine years. His fa-
ther, Henry Stone, founder
and president of TK records,
worked as a producer for
James Brown, Ray Charles
and Sam & Dave.
The son has since produc-
ed albums of dance music,
rap and rock n' roll. But his
first project was a comedy
record.
"I put together Ron and
DC Crew," Mr. Stone said.
"It was Ronald Reagan rap-
ping. And it made Bill-
board's top 100 pop chart."
With the success of the
new album have come tele-
vision and movie offers. But
neither comic would talk
about them.
"So as not to curse
ourselves," said Mr.
Lambert, in MC Moisha's
heavy European voice. ❑

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

73

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