In case you missed it, Chicago’s World Music Festival is going on this week. They always draw many amazing bands from around the globe–it’s difficult to choose which shows to see.

I’ve already seen great performances by Mostar Sevdah Reunion, Little Cow, and Phyllis Chen.

I’m hoping to catch a few more (including Mongolian overtone singing!) before it ends on Thursday.

See the full schedule here:
Chicago World Music Festival 2009.


Like all awesome bands (um…The Monkees?) we have a theme song.

Although the melody is from “Abi Gezunt”, the lyrics are provided by Eric*, our multitalented mandola, harmonica, djembe, and doumbek player. Inspired by a particularly interesting practice session at our drummer Andy’s place, he wrote the lyrics that gave us our name:

“Well there’s kids and there’s dogs and hairless cats
that klezmer class is such a gas
oh yea, shake that chicken fat.

Clarinets and mandolins,
You don’t know the shape we’re in.
Oh yea, shake that chicken fat.

It’s nutritious and delicious.
You can spread it on your kishkes.

Got no worries, got no doubts.
When you got your grade ‘A’ schmaltz
Oh, yea, shake that chicken fat.”

Check out a stripped down and soulful rendition recorded live at Silvie’s:
Abi Gezunt / ChickenFat Theme – Live at Silvie’s

The traditional lyrics are sung by Shifra.

Hear it for yourself at one of our shows this week:

Thursday, September 10
Bill’s Blues

1029 Davis, Evanston, IL
7pm-9:30pm
$5

Friday, September 11
smARTshow
Debonair Social Club

1575 N Milwaukee, Chicago, IL
9pm to 10pm
$5

* He’s also an excellent food photographer.


This just in!

We’ll be playing at the 2nd annual smARTshow:

Join the artists of the Flat Iron for  2nd Annual Fall smARTshow, a unique three day show & sale in Wicker Park/Bucktown, featuring the art of well over one hundred painters, sculptors, photographers, performers, poets and musicians.

Details here:

Friday, September 11
ChickenFat Klezmer Orchestra

Debonair Social Club
1575 N Milwaukee, Chicago, IL
9pm to 10pm

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In other, nerdier, news, Google Translate now offers Yiddish.  According to Google’s translation, our band is called:

שמאַלץ קלעזמער אָרקעסטער

Good to know!