The critics say

‘‘Dashes of New York City downtown-like risk-taking episodes, Jewish folk, jazz, rock andAmericana, amid Krakauer’s animated shuddering expressionism...
Rousing, celebratory gala… Krakauer’s brainchild is colorful, dense and largely festive along with his astute adherence to compositional detail…’’
‘‘Krakauer will lovingly render, or unapologetically mess with, music from such films as Cabaret, Lenny, Avalon, Love and Death, The Producers and Funny Girl. The moods range from pure balladic elegance to ballsy rocking out… The eerily voice-like klezmer clarinet: it couldn't be a better fit for the movie themes that David Krakauer interprets.’’
‘‘Although Krakauer can gracefully unspool toe-tapping joviality, he is also a master of nuance who knows how to maximize the impact of a ballad. Segments of “La Vita E Bella” and “The Family” are memorable for the intoxicating quality of their gorgeous melodies. Krakauer’s arrangement of “Moving To The Ghetto” generates the same intensity of drama that a great film can.’’
‘‘Brilliant concept, first-rate execution... Krakauer’s star shines brighter than ever on The Big Picture.’’
‘‘David Krakauer is to klezmer what Eddie Palmieri is to salsa:  a virtuoso grounded in — and deeply committed to — a musical genre that is an expression of his own cultural background, and an innovator who takes the genre places it has never been. Krakauer and the band do wonderful and often surprising things with every one, re-inventing the material with soul, pathos, humor, and no lack of funkiness. With his new release, The Big Picture, he’s crafted his most successful and boundary-smashing work to date.’’
‘‘Mr. Krakauer’s clarinet girded each with a piercing wail… Communicating anguish, outrage and catharsis. And connection… As with the klezmer tune in the encore, Mr. Krakauer gave it his all.’’
‘‘David Krakauer is one of the most exhilarating clarinetists in town. He’s also New York to the core… The Big Picture celebrates New York-centric film music from across the ages, a mix of well-known and obscure treasures, recorded with a killer band… How do you do Body and Soul and make it fresh? Turn it into a slinky noir clarinet feature and swing it from a hint of a waltz to a Lynchian sway… Everything here serves more or less as a launching pad for Krakauer’s swirling, crescendoing, sometimes achingly intense, sometimes subtly witty clarinet solos.’’


The Museum itself serves as a compelling location for “The Big Picture”. It overlooks the New York Harbor, a reminder of the Jewish and non-Jewish immigrants landing on Ellis Island bringing their hopes, stories and vast cultural heritage to this new promised land. Krakauer, whose own ancestors immigrated from Eastern Europe, became one of the most important innovators in Klezmer music, contextualizing the ancestral sounds of his heritage into a distinctive, personal voice.

Press for The Big Picture

All About Jazz Album Review

New York Times Review



DownBeat Magazine Editors’ Pick

Tablet Podcast Interview

The Jewish Week

Time Out New York Critics’ Pick

Village Voice Best Jazz Shows in NYC

Jewish Daily Forward


Jewish Voice