My friend Ayelet and I were at a bar in Jerusalem when we stumbled on two musicians. They were religious Jews, one on the guitar, one on the violin, playing Led Zeppelin.
Love the guy jumping in the background. And how incredible is Alexandra? (the violinist)
Alexandra was all energy, arching over her guitar, stretching back, her bow jittering over the strings. It was fantastic to watch her, and her physical beauty is almost as noteworthy as her skill. She’s called “the Gypsy Lady” by people who regularly listen to her, maybe because of her clothing and her fantastic grasp of the violin. She gave me a bright smile and her business card when I asked her about herself. The man, a rabbi, sang with a heavy accent. He teaches Torah and Talmud during the day and has a quiet aura. He just said “Tomer” when I asked his name, no “Rabbi Tomer”, no elaboration on his skills.
Here they are performing ‘מי יודע’ (‘Who knows’) by the wonderful Idan Raichel:
One of the nicest things was the crowd, religious and secular Jews, kids, tourists, one Muslim family, giggling teenagers…and one monk. (Go figure.) I love how music unites people, and it’s especially moving in Israel, where people of different backgrounds are in a constant state of tension. And there’s actually one remarkable video of the duo performing ‘Hallelujah’ with a priest.
Only in Israel.