Tagged Matisyahu

Why so many Jews love the band Phish

Phish performs on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," Oct. 10, 2016. The band members are, from left: Page McConnell on keyboard, Trey Anastasio on guitar, Jon Fishman (barely pictured) on drums and Mike Gordon on bass. (Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank)

(JTA) — Gary Stein remembers the first time someone played a Phish song for him in high school. It was “Divided Sky,” an intricate 11-minute tune that shows off the group’s diverse jam rock chops. Stein, who’s now a 30-year-old history doctoral student living in Los Angeles, quickly became… Read more »

The Matisyahu affair: In Europe, conflating Jew and Israel

Matisyahu performing at the Rototom Festival in Benicassim, Spain, Aug. 22, 2015. (YouTube)

(JTA) — A Spanish music festival’s recent decision to rescind its invitation to the American reggae singer Matisyahu, after he declined to endorse a Palestinian state, brought international attention to a phenomenon that many European Jews have been feeling for years: that they are being targeted for Israel’s actions.… Read more »

Matisyahu bringing tour to Rialto Theatre

Grammy-nominated musician Matisyahu, on tour to promote “Akeda,” his fifth studio album, will perform at the Rialto Theatre on Tuesday, Oct. 28. “Akeda” is the Hebrew word for “binding” and often refers to the biblical story of the binding of Isaac. “Akeda is the kind of album an artist… Read more »

Matisyahu talks about his new religious outlook and appearance

PARIS (JTA) – Cigarette in one hand and cup of tea in the other, Matisyahu sat down with JTA in his closet-sized dressing room during his European tour to talk about his life, his music, how he’s raising his kids, and the recent changes in his religious outlook and… Read more »

Matisyahu bringing acoustic tour to Rialto


Matisyahu, the no-longer-Hasidic reggae superstar, will bring his first acoustic tour to Tucson on Wednesday, Jan. 30, performing at the Rialto Theatre. The concert will feature acoustic renditions of tracks from his latest album, “Spark Seeker,” in addition to some fan favorites. While in Santa Monica earlier this month… Read more »

In Hollywood’s ‘The Possession,’ the dybbuk is back

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — Thought your daughter’s odd behavior was just another preteen phase? There may be an alternate explanation: The dybbuk is back. The malevolent spirit from 16th-century Jewish mysticism and folklore reappears in “The Possession,” a Hollywood film featuring Matisyahu and Kyra Sedgwick now showing in Tucson.… Read more »

For Orthodox musicians, alternatives to the Friday night concert abound

The Moshav band performs original world music, folk and rock in Hebrew and English, as well as "Shlomo tunes" of the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. (Courtesy Moshav Band)

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — With his yarmulke, ritual fringes and lyrics occasionally borrowed from ancient texts, Grammy-nominated reggae star Matisyahu may be the most publicly Jewish performer in the mainstream music scene. But he’s not the only one. Growing ranks of Jewishly committed performers are finding success on the national… Read more »

“Rabbi, Matisyahu shaved off his beard! Should I shave off mine?”

NEW YORK (JTA) — As if the Jewish world doesn’t have enough problems with Iran on the brink of starting a nuclear war and the radical Muslim Brotherhood making gains in Egypt’s phased elections. This week we were rocked by another close shave with disaster: “Chasidic reggae superstar” Matisyahu… Read more »

Apres le beard: Matisyahu takes the stage in Boulder

BOULDER, Colo. (JTA) — When Matisyahu, the 32-year-old Chasidic reggae superstar, appeared onstage for the first time since shaving his trademark beard, no one in the audience at the Boulder Theater seemed surprised. The news of his shaving had been widely discussed since the star tweeted a photo of… Read more »

Bigger than the beard, Matisyahu move marks ongoing spiritual journey

Matisyahu posted pictures of himself on Twitter after shaving his signature beard, Dec. 13, 2011. (Photo via Twitter)

NEW YORK (JTA) — The world’s most famous Chasidic Jew has shaved his beard. With a declaration Tuesday morning that he was “reclaiming” himself, Jewish music star Matisyahu — a.k.a. Matthew Miller — shaved his signature beard and wrote, “No more Chassidic reggae superstar.” The musician posted two photos of his newly… Read more »

Pump up the volume: Music propels the way to a rededicated Jewish life

The Maccabeats, Yeshiva University's a capella group, with their 2010 YouTube sensation "Candlelight" freshens up the Chanukah story. (Courtesy Jewish Community Center of Paramus, N.J.)

NEW YORK (JTA) -- My 3-year-old son is obsessed with showing people his room, sidling sheepishly over to guests and asking, “Can I show you my room?” My son reminds me how important our "place" is -- "A Room of One's Own," in Virginia Wolff’s words. Our rooms make us… Read more »