While many artists play one-off holiday shows, Yo La Tengo, the Hoboken, NJ band, has gone to the extreme: They are playing each night of Hanukkah at the local club Maxwell's starting Dec 9. The trio first played the club in 1984 but never during the eight-day Jewish holiday. Proceeds of the shows will go to local charities and groups, including the Hoboken Public Library and the local chapter of the ACLU.
It's akin to the Bruce Springsteen shows in Asbury Park," Todd Abramson, the club's owner told the New York Post. "It's their community." Maxwell's will light a menorah for the first time-ever at the club; all eight nights sold out in advance.
"This time of year everyone does stuff for Christmas," adds group leader and guitarist Ira Kaplan. "To do something pegged to Hanukkah semed appropriate." Kaplan, who is Jewish, does not consider himself religious and did not have a Bar Mitzvah. They will play some experimental music (to them) with songs by Neil Diamond, Joey Ramone, Richard Hell and Marc Bolan (T. Rex) in addition to their regular repertoire.