Despite its popularity in the 1990s, I may not have heard the original English version of the song “Coco Jamboo” until it was played at the East Elmhurst gay night club Scape while I was there for my friend Ernesto’s birthday party on the tenth.
Last summer, I had encountered a version of the song in Azerbaijani when doing some online research about my Mountain Jewish origins, and I actually assumed it was the original until I went to Scape. What is the title line of the English version (“Ya ya ya Coco Jamboo”) became in Azerbaijani “Ya ya ya Yəhudilər [Jews],” the singing of which I found completely irresistible when I finally heard the original.
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