Concrete Blonde is an alternative rock band dating from the early 1980s to the early 1990s (and re-formed again in the 2000s). They are best known for the poignant songwriting and vocals of Johnette Napolitano. Singer / songwriter / bassist Napolitano formed the band Dream 6 with guitarist James Mankey in Los Angeles in 1982, releasing an eponymous EP in France on the Happy Hermit label in 1983. When they signed with IRS in 1986, labelmate Michael Stipe suggested the name Concrete Blonde, describing the contrast between their hard rock music and introspective lyrics.
The Klezmatics are an American klezmer band based in New York City. Formed in New York's East Village in 1986, the band plays an updated form of the music, mixing it with other musical traditions, singing in English and Yiddish. They have also participated in cross-cultural collaborations, most notably with the Palestinian musician Simon Shaheen.
Benny Goodman, born Benjamin David Goodman, (May 30, 1909 – June 13, 1986) was an American jazz musician, known as King of Swing, Patriarch of the Clarinet, The Professor, and Swing's Senior Statesman. Goodman was regarded by some as a demanding taskmaster, by others an arrogant and eccentric martinet. Many musicians spoke of The Ray, Goodman's trademark glare that he bestowed on a musician who failed to perform to his demanding standards.