In the fifty years since the American folk music revival began to interact with liberal American Judaism, audiences of contemporary Jewish music have become accustomed to the fusion of religious ideas with American musical sounds. Nowadays, as the canon of Jewish-American music has expanded to include increasingly diverse musical traditions in progressive Jewish spheres, audiences have become increasingly receptive to exploring Jewish identity through new cultural intersections. Nefesh Mountain, the husband-and-wife Jewish bluegrass duo of Doni Zasloff and Eric Lindberg, exists at the forefront of this new wave of music rooted in intersecting identities. This article explores the evolution of reception of Nefesh Mountain’s music from perception of “Jewgrass” as parody, to fascination, and finally to deep appreciation. By exploring the intersection of Judaism and Americana, Zasloff and Lindberg seek to deepen understanding of their American Jewish experience. A side-by-side comparison of selected Nefesh Mountain songs with traditional and popular bluegrass songs will elucidate this connection.

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