“We didn’t think it would last this long,” admits Judah Levy, one of the three founding members of the Englewood-based band Burnt Ice. Levy and his friends Ben Eidman and Matt Parker were sixth-graders at the Moriah School when they formed the band in 2006. Later Zach Dicker and Tamar Sastow joined the crew.
“We were all friends who played instruments, so we started a band because we thought we’d enjoy it. We knew we could possibly do it so we decided to try it out,” Levy says.
There’s a dispute on where the name “Burnt Ice” came from; it was either the base player’s dad or Levy’s cousin who thought of it. “It’s a cool name, so we decided to keep it even though it had no spiritual or emotional meaning to us,” Levy adds.
The band, composed of a drummer, bass player, rhythm guitarist, lead guitarist, and keyboard player, plays classic rock songs from the ’60s through the early ’80s, and might throw in an occasional ’90s song. Practicing on a weekly basis, the Burnt Ice band has performed mostly at benefits – for Ohel, Nothing but Nets, a soup kitchen, and more – and at a Purim event at their high school, SAR, that was a smashing success.
The band members are seniors now, and they are about to disperse in different directions. They hope to play together occasionally in Israel, but since they are all going to different yeshivot, their upcoming Teaneck concert on June 17 “might be our last gig as a band,” Levy says. Burnt Ice is making it a great gig. They’re performing at Mexicali Live, and have invited other young local bands to join them on the bill: The Green Stop Sign band, run by neighborhood friend Allen Glenn; Jonah Eidman & Friends; and Jon Merkin (previously of The Shake). Proceeds will benefit Israel’s Hatzalah ambulance service.
“It’s our last gig and we wanted to make something of it,” Levy says.