Daily Archives: December 26, 2016

Maccabeats performance gives Denver-area Jewish community a novel way to ring in Hanukkah, spend Christmas

It can be rare to find such an exciting way to celebrate Hanukkah. “The community in Denver has about 50,000 Jews in it. 25, 2016. There are many events centered around Christmas, he said, but a dearth of novel ways to enjoy what’s known as the Festival of Lights. “Everything is closed on Christmas,” said Dana Stein, a long-time fan of the group who was at their concert while visiting family from New York. “You’ve (normally) got Chinese food or the movies,” said Avi Stein, who was sitting next to his wife, Dana. The Jews need something to connect them to Judaism.”
The Maccabeats repertoire did just that, mixing traditional Hebrew songs with modern pop hits, such as Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” and Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite.”
“Hanukkah is one of the most under-understood holidays,” said Rabbi Ahron Wasserman, who heads up The Jewish Experience. There ‘s a tremendous lack of involvement. “It’s the jackpot.”
The Maccabeats are a yarmulke-clad a cappella ensemble named after the Maccabees, the ancient Jewish warriors who fought the Greek army and who are central to the story of Hanukkah. The Maccabeats include a beat boxer that goes by the moniker “The Orthobox.”

The Maccabeats perform at George Washington HS. “This gives you another opportunity.” Related Articles

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“We really wanted to give the Jewish community something fun and exciting,” he said. The Maccabeats perform at George Washington High School on Sunday, Dec. A fun way for the Jewish community to spend Christmas/celebrate Hanukka pic.twitter.com/faOA8bytTC
— Jesse Aaron Paul (@JesseAPaul) December 25, 2016
For those who came to watch the performance, many of whom had children in tow, they were hoping to feel that sense of community and celebrate the holiday together. (Courtesy Sara Shvartzman)
Movie theaters, Chinese food and now a cappella. The group was founded at Yeshiva University in New York City several years back and have since taken their act on the road — internationally — and onto the internet, where their YouTube videos have won viral status. Hundreds gathered on Sunday afternoon at George Washington High School to watch a performance by the viral Jewish singing group The Maccabeats, kicking off Hanukkah in the Denver area and providing the city’s Jewish community a fun, alternative option to their unwritten Christmas Day traditions. Rabbi Raphael Leban, managing director of The Jewish Experience in Denver, said the idea behind Sunday’s concert was to give Colorado Jews a new way to gather and appreciate Hanukkah. The holiday began Saturday night and runs eights days. The Jewish group gave the Denver-area Jewish community a fun way to spend Christmas and a novel way to celebrate Hanukka. “We really miss the whole point.”
Wasserman said the holiday, which remembers how a vessel of oil for a temple that was supposed to last one day ended up burning for eight, should be recognized for Judaism’s survival. It’s a theme The Maccabeats capture through their music. “It happens that Hanukkah is our bread and butter,” said Noey Jacobson, one of the group’s founding members.

What you should know before you buy Apple’s AirPods

Running with them at a nearby lake wasn’t a problem at all. The AirPods never dropped a connection, and they pair easily with the iPhone. But I’m a little less worried about losing them now. Still, I’d only really advise against them if you’re prone to losing things. (Not my favorite activity.) And while AirPods switch smoothly between Apple Watch and iPhone, they won’t pair simultaneously with your phone and your Mac or other Bluetooth-enabled device. Ear shape may vary results, but I had no problems. (And I’m not a particularly smooth or elegant runner, believe me.) Ditto while jump-roping. Overall, I’d say AirPods aren’t a must-have product because you lose some function by going wireless. For me, that’s a slight step down from headphones that let you connect to several devices at once. Many of my initial thoughts stand. AirPods lack many functions I expect from headphones, such as being able to control the volume from the cord. Siri picks up the slack — and you can ask her quietly to change the volume or skip a track — but it takes longer than a button-press and requires me to talk to myself in public. Take an AirPod out of your ear, and you have to hold it — tightly, in my case, for fear I’d drop one and lose $80 down a swan’s gullet. I didn’t notice a dip in audio quality. They do come with a one-year warranty, plus out-of-warranty service in case you lose or damage them — but replacing a lost one would cost you $69 each. I still had no problem with the five-hour battery life, though those on long flights may disagree. (Marcio Jose Sanchez, The Associated Press)
Those expecting some extra cash this holiday season may be eyeing Apple’s $160 AirPods as a present for themselves. I still have my gripes. I don’t often get tangled in my headphones, but it was nice not worrying about it while pulling on a sweatshirt or doing a jumping jack — a glimpse into a future world without wires. Ideally, AirPods would always be in your ears or in their charging case, but we do not always live in an ideal world. Losing AirPods would be much more frustrating than mislaying a $15 pair of headphones from the airport. Apple recently sent along a pair for me to test, replacing some pre-release AirPods I’d played with before and found a little too ahead of their time for most people. Related Articles

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Plus, I still missed the cord as a safety blanket. With my prime worry gone, I reveled in the freedom of not having a cord. But if you think you can keep track of them and are intrigued by their compact convenience, AirPods are an interesting step into the wireless future. They could easily slip into the wash in a pocket with my loose change. 7, 2016, in San Francisco. They actually held up better during exercise than when I had tried sleeping with them in my ears. Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, talks about the features on the new iPhone 7 earphone options during an event to announce new products, Wednesday, Sept.

Fans mourn death of George Michael as charities reveal his work

26, 2016. Among the groups he supported were the Terrence Higgins Trust, which helps people with AIDS, Macmillan Cancer Support, and Childline, which offers confidential phone counseling for young people. Many paid tribute on Facebook and Twitter and others cited years of good works that received little publicity — largely because Michael insisted on keeping his charity work out of the limelight. The man with the reputation for self-indulgence had actually given millions of pounds (dollars) to charities involved with helping children, cancer victims and AIDS sufferers. This story was first published on DenverPost.com The singer’s death was announced late Sunday. Tributes are left outside the home of British musician George Michael in London, Monday, Dec. George Michael, who rocketed to stardom with WHAM! “Having worked with him on a number of occasions his great talent always shone through and his self-deprecating sense of humor made the experience even more pleasurable,” McCartney said, posting a picture of the two of them together. He was also remembered for small acts of kindness: helping his village in north London get a Christmas tree, and volunteering at a homeless shelter. and went on to enjoy a long and celebrated solo career lined with controversies, has died, his publicist said Sunday. Rights activist Peter Tatchell, who knew Michael before he achieved fame, said Michael had hidden his homosexuality in the early part of his career because gay public figures were subjected to vicious treatment by the British tabloid press. Childline founder Esther Rantzen said Michael gave royalties from his 1996 hit “Jesus To A Child” to the charity along with many other donations. (Tim Ireland, The Associated Press)
LONDON — Grieving fans on Monday mourned the death of George Michael as British charities revealed that the pop star had secretly been a major behind-the-scenes donor who gave his time and money to support cherished causes. She said Michael was determined that no one outside the charity should know “how much he gave to the nation’s most vulnerable children.”
Jane Barron from the Terrence Higgins Trust said Michael made many donations and gifts, including the royalties of his “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” duet with Elton John in 1991. Michael had spoken publicly about the pain of losing a partner to AIDS early in the epidemic, but he kept his long history of donations to the Trust private. Tatchell said Michael’s response to his arrest amounted to “a defiant defense of the right to be gay” that had an impact throughout the gay community. Fans placed flowers and other tributes at his homes in north London and in Goring, England, where he died of apparent heart failure. Former Beatle Paul McCartney posted a statement on his website praising Michael’s “sweet soul music,” which he said will live on. Michael’s later years were marked by occasional brushes with the law and a series of driving incidents related to substance abuse, but this was overlooked Monday as directors of major charities and advocacy groups stepped forward to praise him. He praised the singer for making his sexual orientation known after he was arrested in 1998 for lewd behavior in a public toilet in Los Angeles. He was 53. “Over the years he gave us millions and we were planning next year, as part of our 30th anniversary celebrations to create, we hoped, a big concert in tribute to him — to his artistry, to his wonderful musicality but also to thank him for the hundreds of thousands of children he helped,” she said.

Former Wham frontman George Michael dead at 53

He was 53. with his school friend Andrew Ridgeley in the early 1980’s. The singer has died, according his publicist said on Sunday. 9, 2012. Helped by MTV, the cheerful duo easily crossed the Atlantic to become popular in the United States. FILE- British singer George Michael in concert to raise money for AIDS charity Sidaction, in Paris, France, in this file photo dated Sunday, Sept. (AP Photo/Francois Mori, FILE)
By GREGORY KATZ, Associated Press
LONDON (AP) — George Michael, who rocketed to stardom with WHAM! and went on to enjoy a long and celebrated solo career lined with controversies, has died, his publicist said Sunday. Michael, with startling good looks and an easy stage manner, formed the boy band WHAM! Michael enjoyed immense popularity early in his career as a teenybopper idol, delivering a series of hits such as “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” ”Young Guns (Go For It)” and “Freedom.”
As a solo artist, he developed into a more serious singer and songwriter, lauded by critics for his tremendous vocal range.