Yiddish Curiosities: a library of wonderful but forgotten Yiddish songs from the late 1920s and after (includes Polish Jewish Cabaret). Have a listen!

1. Link to list of posts on this site
2. Link to songs for sale
3. Click here for our music videos of Yiddish songs with English subtitles (mainly post-1925)
4. List of the still lost songs. Do you know any of them?
5. Warszawa zumerkurs song links


Saturday, June 11, 2022

A fine review of a Barton Brothers show (1951)

The first mention I found of them was in a newspaper listed their show on radio station WEAF, January 1933. 

The show "Bagels and Yox" opened in NYC in September 1951. 

Two Bilingual Revues Visit Broadway Looking for 'Family Trade' By JOHN CHAPMAN 

After long, persistent and tiresome publicity campaigns, two Yiddish-English or American-Yiddish revues have come to occupy theatres which might otherwise be unoccupied at the moment. They have the appalling titles of "Bagles and Yox" and "Borscht Capades." 

A bagel is a plaster doughnut. Borscht, the dictionary says, is "a Little Russian soup of various ingredients colored with beets." Yox are more than one yock. Walter Winchell says he didn't invent yock, but he made it current slanguage. He thinks he first heard the word around Lindy's, and it's a kind of phonetic description of a belly-laugh. A capade isn't anything but if a skating show can call itself an icecapade a borscht show can call itself a borscht capade if it has the nerve. And the best thing either of these new revues has is nerve. Both are specialized and semi-pro, and would not be given room on Broadway later in the season when theatres begin to fill up. 

One, Bagels and Yox," is quite awful in a good-natured way. It is a smalltime night club floor show with no scenery and no evidence of organi. tation. Its principals, who include Lou Saxon, master of ceremonies: Rickie Layne, a ventriloquist; Mary Forrest, a loud singer, and the Barton brothers, who impersonate people, can be given a B for effort. Their material grades no better than F for frightful. 

Another review of this same show said: "Next come the Barton brothers, three [sic] energetic gentlemen who not only give imitations of the songs they have recorded for phonograph records, but also reasonably recognizable imitations of Jimmy Durante, Groucho Marx and Charles Laughton." 

In March 1960 Daily News: "The Barton Brothers, comedy team at Arele's, are the only Yiddish recording stars to have sold a million copies of a record (Joe and Paul)." 

The last mention I found was June 1977, when they were playing at Far Rockaway High School in a "Jewish-American vaudeville show" sponsored by the Far Rockaway Chapter of Hadassah.


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