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On the Light Side

August 17, 1987

BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) _ The windows of Emily Hancock’s new stucco duplex were broken, the ivy around it looked dead and there was trash everywhere. ″It’s wonderful. Beautiful,″ she proclaimed.

Hancock, 41, was among the eight families selected in a lottery for a chance to buy seven run-down, city-owed Victorians or a Spanish-style duplex for less than $78,000 each. To qualify, residents had to meet a sliding-scale definition of low income that translated to $20,000 to $24,000 for a family of four.

Hancock said she will use a city-offered loan to fix her new place up for herself and her 18-year-old son, Tad.

Another winner in Saturday’s drawing from 192 entries was 77-year-old Deavera Allen.

″I haven’t even looked at it,″ she said of her new home. ″All I can say is, ‘Thank the Lord.’ I nearly had a stroke 3/8″

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BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) - An Orthodox rabbi is reaching out to young people in an unorthodox way - with rock ‘n’ roll.

Mordechai Winyarz, 26, paid New York songwriter Lenny Solomon $30,000 to write songs with contemporary Jewish themes and hired young Jewish musicians to perform and record an album for $12,000.

The result is a Jewish rock ‘n’ roll album, said the spiritual leader of the Boca Raton Community Synagogue. It is set for national release Sept. 1.

″I’m looking to create a revolution in Jewish life,″ he said. ″Music speaks to people.″

The album, ″Jewish Pride,″ includes a rap song ″Rappin’ Jewish″ written by Danny Furst. A sample of the lyrics:

″La-die-doo, I’m a Jew ’cause I think it’s cool

″Yeah, I eat kosher meat ’cause I ain’t no fool

″Ask me anything you want to, but I will repeat

″I say being Jewish makes me groove to the beat.″

Winyarz says he’s been criticized for his methods but he believes in them.

″You can’t take a kid who’s just finished a Van Halen concert and expect him to sit still in a synagogue,″ he said. ″Just as the radio speaks to you and talks to you, the music of this generation can use Jewish themes to talk to Jewish youth.″

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