From ShoreFire Media:
When you think of New York City’s Harlem, you may think of James Brown at the
Apollo, Duke Ellington at the Savoy or Bill Clinton’s offices on 125th Street. But
did you know that Harlem was also home to large numbers of Eastern European Jews in
the early 20th century? Some of the grandest brownstones in the Mount Morris Park
neighborhood were Jewish family homes.

Grammy-winning producer Aaron Levinson pays homage to the vibrant history of Harlem
in ‘The Harlem Experiment’, to be released by Ropeadope Records October 30th.
Featuring musicians such as clarinetist Don Byron of the Grammy-awarded Klezmatics,
trombonist Steve Bernstein and many other notable jazz musicians, it showcases
Harlem as melting pot and offers a unique version of the Yiddish folk song “Bei Mir
Bist Du Schoen,” with a soaring solo by Byron.

Read on for more info.

‘The Harlem Experiment’ Due Next in Tastemaker Label’s Innovative City “Experiment”

Full Album Available for Pre-Order via; Two Tracks Available on
iTunes Now

On October 30, indie label Ropeadope will release ‘The Harlem Experiment,’ the third
installment in their city “experiment” series. The “experiment” albums are
jazz-inspired collaborations by well-known local musicians who set out to capture
the sound and spirit of their hometowns.

The first two in the series focus on Philadelphia (music provided by Questlove Ahmir
Thompson, Christian McBride, and Uri Cane) and Detroit (featuring Regina Carter,
Marcus Belgrave, Bennie Maupin and others). So why Harlem? According to label
president Andy Blackman Hurwitz: “The history, the present and the future. We look
to Harlem as ground zero for all that is modern day ‘American’ music – whether you
call it jazz, R&B, hip-hop or rock, all of it passed through the neighborhood’s

‘The Harlem Experiment’ takes on the melting pot identity of Harlem, from the early
Jewish enclaves to the epicenter of African-American culture to the Latin legacy of
Spanish Harlem titans like Tito Puente and Eddie Palmieri. The Harlem House Band
features Carlos Alomar (guitar, David Bowie), Eddy Martinez (keys, Tito Puente,
Mongo Santamaria, Run D.M.C.), Steven Bernstein (trumpet, Sex Mob), Steve Berrios
(drums, Chick Corea), Don Byron (clarinet, The Klezmatics, Vernon Reid) and Ruben
Rodriguez (bass, Tito Puente). Grammy Award-Winning producer Aaron Levinson,
creator of the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, produced the album.

An audio homage to Harlem would clearly have to include jazz, funk and hip-hop,
given that Harlem is synonymous with James Brown’s ‘Live At The Apollo’ and Duke
Ellington’s “Stompin’ At The Savoy.” ‘The Harlem Experiment’ does just that with
its’ big beats, horns, and swagger. But the project also digs deep into Harlem’s
illustrious roots and gives shout-outs to the Jewish and Spanish communities that
also helped to create one of the coolest neighborhoods in the world. It makes sense
that Latin rhythms are laced throughout the jazz and hip-hop of tracks like “One For
Jackie,” and “It’s Just Begun.” It makes sense that the Klezmer style of Don
Byron’s clarinet transcends the playful jazz on “Reefer Man” and the funkified
Yiddish folk song “Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen.”

‘The Harlem Experiment’ achieves a mighty task: summing up the cultural rainbow of
Harlem in 50 minutes of music. Listen to this album and 100 years of Harlem begins
to unfold in your ears.

Pre-Order the album at “A Rose In Spanish Harlem,” featuring
James Hunter and “Reefer Man,” featuring Taj Mahal, are now available for purchase
on iTunes.

“A Rose In Spanish Harlem”
“Reefer Man”

Track Listing:
1. Intro
2. One for Jackie (featuring the Harlem Experiment House Band)
3. Rigor Mortis (featuring the Harlem Experiment House Band)
4. Reefer Man (featuring Taj Mahal on vocals)
5. Harlem River Drive (featuring Steven Bernstein on trumpet)
6. Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen (featuring Don Byron on clarinet)
7. Mums Interlude
8. It’s Just Begun (featuring Larry Legend on turntables)
9. Mambo a la Savoy (featuring Carlos Alomar on guitar)
10. A Rose in Spanish Harlem (featuring James Hunter on vocals & guitar)
11. One For Malcolm (featuring Malcolm X)
12. ‘Lil Bit (featuring DJ Mums on the mic)
13. Think (featuring Queen Esther on vocals)
14. A Rose in Spanish Harlem (Instrumental)
15. Walking Through Harlem (featuring Olu Dara on vocals, guitar & pocket trumpet)

For more information please contact Nancie Schwartz Martin (
or Chris Taillie ( at Shore Fire Media, 718 522 7171.