May 4, 2006


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Jazz and Red Sox at the J
Gilad Barkan Quartet perform, Red Sox/Yankees tickets are raffled, at the Jewish Federation
By Richie Victorino

Gilad Barkan’s life with music began as it continues — uniquely.

He learned to play piano from a family friend who was a guitar teacher. Now a grown man, he performs with several bands, including the Gilad Barkan Quartet, which features flutist Amir Milstein.

“Years ago I met Amir, and I wasn’t looking for anything … but I just realized how he would add to the mix,” Barkan said. “He’s not a traditional jazz player, which in part is what attracted me to his playing. It adds a lot of possibilities. It also moved the band … away from the swing and more into the Latin groove.”

Barkan is a part-time musician, part-time teacher and is weeks away from receiving his master’s degree in family therapy.

“I always wonder if doing music full-time would detract from it somewhat,” Barkan said. “But I’d like to be playing more, definitely.”

The Gilad Barkan Quartet performs at the Jewish Federation of New Hampshire (in Manchester) this Saturday, May 6. The show benefits the Etz Hayim Synagogue of Derry. In past years, benefits for the synagogue have geared more toward silent auctions and dances hosted by emcees.

This year the board of directors of Etz Hayim was interested in a change of pace.

“In past years it’s just been members of the congregation who came to the event,” said Rubin Russell, who is on the board of directors of Etz Hayim. “We wanted people who would come just to come [for the music], maybe not just to support the synagogue.”

Russell, a longtime jazz fan, saw Gilad Barkan’s band perform once.

“They were just absolutely fabulous,” Russell said. “This is part of new jazz although it sounds very comfortable with me, having grown up with … Miles Davis.”

Barkan comes to New Hampshire for the first time, though he performs quite regularly in Boston, including at First Night this past December.

Red Sox vs. Yankees
In addition to getting to see the Gilad Barkan Quartet, the Etz Hayim Synagogue is raffling off two front-row seats for the Red Sox-vs.-Yankees game (which is sold out) on Saturday, Aug. 19.

“You don’t even have to be present to win,” Russell said.

Comments? Thoughts? Discuss this article and more at

Jazz at the J, featuring the Gilad Barkan Quartet, is at the Jewish Federation of New Hampshire on Saturday, May 6, starting at 7:45 p.m. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased by calling (888) 302-9117. Tickets to the Red Sox-vs.-Yankees game (on Saturday, Aug. 19) will be raffled off, for $10 a raffle ticket.

The Jewish Federation of New Hampshire is located at 698 Beech St., Manchester. Proceeds from the show benefit the Etz Hayim Synagogue of Derry