2 Live Jews 'just kibitzing with rhymes'

October 25, 1990|By Jonathan Takiff | Jonathan Takiff,Knight-Ridder

They're the dopest rappers to ever throw down a corned-beef sandwich and hondle a discount on a nice suit.

They're two thick-accented Jewish elders -- the rappin' rabbi MC Moisha and his homeboy Easy Irving, the deafest dude of Miami Beach. ("Vat? Vat's dat you say?")

What else could their album be called but "As Kosher As They Wanna Be"? Who else could they be but 2 Live Jews?

Oy, are they funny. (And they're going to perform at

Hammerjacks Nov. 2).

"We were rapping when rapping wasn't rapping, it was just kibitzing with rhymes," claims the 83-year-old MC Moisha.

Any similarity between them and that other Florida rap group 2 Live Crew is completely coincidental, Easy Irving swears. "When we made the record, we never heard of those guys. Moisha and I only listen to talk radio. We don't like to bite off anyone."

Still, amazing coincidences prevail. The first single and video off the 2 Live Jews (Kosher Records) album, "Oy, It's So Humid," bear a marked resemblance to that other crew's hit "Me So Horny." But instead of panting for feminine pulchritude, they're praying for some place to cool off from the Collins Avenue heat:

"Walking back to the hotel from the bagel shop

It was so damn humid it was almost like a mop

I was sweating like a mule, I was frying like a blintz

I was swimming in my shorts, if you get the hint."

Then, there's the brazen language. You'll be calling in the anti-defamation league after hearing "JAP Rap" -- dissing the rich, spoiled Jewish American princesses while copping the typical rapper's plea -- "This song isn't about all Jewish women, just about the ones we're talking about."

And you'll have to wash your ears with kosher soap after getting a load of "Shake Your Tuchas," a catalog of Yiddish slang replete with translation.

"Well the tuchas is a booty and a booty is a butt

Here's some other Jewish words so you'll know what is what

Now people often ask what exactly is a shiksa

She's a non-Jewish girl that stands out at the Bar Mitzvah

And people vant to know what we mean when we say schmucks

Well we can't really tell you 'cause this is a kosher cut."

What publicity they're expecting, when that Florida sheriff gets a listen . . . and the writers of "Fiddler on the Roof" catch on to the rappers' use of song samples for "The Matchmaka Game" and the militant "Young Jews Be Proud." Such rebels they are.

2 Live Jews are actually 27-year-old comedian Eric Lambert (a.k.a. Moisha) and 25-year-old writer/impressionist/producer Joe Stone (Irving). The duo's act came together at their weekly card game.

"We both devised old school rappers who had been rapping since the early 1950s, since they met on an Israeli kibbutz when they were in Hebrew school," Stone says. His father, Henry Stone, is a veteran of the Miami music industry and one-time producer of Ray Charles, James Brown, Sam & Dave and Betty Wright.

"We're having fun and helping two old men find the success that has been eluding them all their lives," adds Lambert, tongue in cheek. "Besides, vhere else could you meet such nice vimmen? Oy, you should have seen the one from last night. That Sadie, vot a babe."

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