Terrible Tunes: Mickey Katz’s K’nish Doctor
TERRIBLE Tunes presents Mickey Katz ‘s K’nish Doctor.
In his biography, Katz recalls asking a radio station manager why he wouldn’t play any of his records:
I asked him why he wouldn’t play my records. He said, “Because some of our listeners are offended.”
I asked, “Who, besides you?”
He said, “I don’t think that’s any of your business.”
I answered, “I think it is my business because this is how I make a living. You play Italian records, you play Polish records–”
He cut me off. “I will not play any record with Yiddish in it. Yiddish is the language of the ghetto.”
“My friend,” I said, “Yiddish is the language of our forefathers.”
“I do not care to hear it.”
“Then why don’t you play some of my instrumental records? They’re some of the greatest music in the world, played by some of the greatest musicians in the world-Ziggy Elman, Mannie Klein, Nat Farber–”
Again he cut me off mid-sentence. “There will be no Yiddish spoken, or Jewish music played, on this station.”
Katz’s other tunes include: Borscht Riders in the Sky, Old Black Smidgick, She’ll Be Coming ‘Round the Katzkills, Barber of Schlemiel, and That Pickle in the Window (How Much Is).