Deeply into heavy metal music, he played in the first speed metal band in Israel. But inspiration throughout his drumming education also came heavily from jazz, and Koby Israelite lists Tony Williams, Peter Erskine and Jack DeJohnette as major influences. Following a three year stint in the Israeli army, Koby Israelite moved to England, at first working as a part-time musician while doing a variety of other jobs to keep body and soul together. By 1994, he made the move to working full time, at first as a session drummer, recording and touring with a variety of artists, gigging five to six nights a week.
Finally, in 1999 Israelite was in a position to also start writing and recording his own music. His first major project was the album "Tequila Girls", a sophisticated Latin pop flavoured album co-written with Adam Rogers that so nearly resulted in a major record label contract. However, Koby Israelite by this time realized that he and his music would not sit well with the creativity-devoid ethos of the majors, and he certainly lacks the commonly required qualifications of the age of talentlessness, imaginationlessness and creativitylessness. In 2001, Israelite's debut solo album, "I Think Therefore I'm Not Sure" followed.
This project wasn't tied to any particular genre, style, or other pre-conceived formula and resulted in a fresh fusion of funk, rock, Middle Eastern, and tango. An uncompromisingly personal work, it featured outstanding guest musicians in the form of Sid Gauld on trumpet, Stefan Redtenbacher on bass and Gilad Atzmon on clarinet and sax. Early that same year, Koby Israelite attended a performance by Romanian gipsy band, Taraf de Haidouks and was instantly hooked. This was, in a way, a discovery of new roots (his mother being Romanian). Eventually, this was to lead to the inspiration for Koby Israelite's next album, the just released "Dance of the Idiots" on the Tzadik label.
This is a finely crafted, highly personal and complex exploration of Jewish music, the Jewish experience, even the human condition. Utterly genre-defying, it is a fusion of just about every form of Jewish music, plus rock/heavy metal, jazz, Middle Eastern, Balkan, and more. In both scope and innovation, this album is Beatlesque. A kind of 21st century, Jewish-oriented and inspired "Revolver", "Sergeant Pepper" or White Album.
(Others have also likened it to Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" in its impact.) Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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