Israeli, US and African Stars Unite in Song to Raise Awareness of Increasing Antisemitism
The song features multiple Grammy-winning and Country Music Hall of Famer Ricky Skaggs and Grammy award-winning gospel singer Jacky Clark-Chisholm including Israeli superstars Avraham Tal, Dudu Aharon, Narkis, Eden Meiri, and Gali Atari, along with African singers Rahel Getu, T.Y. Bello, and Mynah Rams
By SAMUEL HYDE
American and African stars have teamed up with some of Israel’s biggest names in the music industry to collaborate on a song titled “The Blessings Israel”.
The collaboration is a gesture of solidarity to raise awareness about the rise of antisemitism throughout the world. Israeli media have likened the collaboration to the ‘We Are the World,’ campaign, a song from the 1980s that featured some of the world’s top artists singing together united behind a common cause.
The original song titled “The Blessing”, was originally released in 2020 by popular Christian singer/songwriter Kari Jobe and garnered a Grammy Award nomination for Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song at the 2021 Grammy Awards.
The Israeli version was released by Passages in collaboration with StandWithUs and features multiple Grammy-winning and Country Music Hall of Famer Ricky Skaggs and Grammy award-winning gospel singer Jacky Clark-Chisholm including Israeli superstars Avraham Tal, Dudu Aharon, Narkis, Eden Meiri, and Gali Atari, along with African singers Rahel Getu, T.Y. Bello, and Mynah Rams.
The project was the brainchild of Daniel Berkove, an Israeli businessman originally from the U.S. “In its essence, the video, which for me has been a very personal project, is about unity, celebrating the values we share rather than focusing on what keeps us apart,” Berkove said.
The central theme of the song is woven around the biblical verses said by kohanim (priests) in the synagogue and parents to their children on the Sabbath: “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.”
Dudu Aharon, described how shocked he is to see intense security at synagogues in the U.S. and Europe, and the fear he feels about publicly wearing a kippah when he is outside of Israel.
“Israel can put out many videos about antisemitism, but I believe that music can bring us together and unite,” he said.
Rivka Kidron, co-founder of Passages and a member of its Board of Directors commented on the project, explaining that “as Jews face so many threats from antisemitism around the world, it is extremely comforting to witness our Christian brothers and sisters raising the issue and demonstrating that they stand by the side of the Jewish people and Israel.”
Speaking about the collaboration, founder and CEO of StandWithUs Roz Rothstein said the organization “is honored to be part of this important project with Passages.”
“At a time where antisemitism and hate are plaguing the world, we are grateful to our Christian brothers and sisters at Passages who stand in solidarity with the Jewish community and the State of Israel, as communicated in this video,” Rothstein said, adding that “this musical project continues to build a unique bridge between our communities, and we look forward to seeing how its message inspires and empowers people around the world.”