Music Voyager

Israel: Songs from the Holy Land

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Music Voyager host Jacob Edgar travels to Jerusalem and northern Israel to discover the sights and sounds of a region rich with ancient history and religious significance. Israel is a land of contrasts and conflicts: between tradition and modernity, war and peace, spirituality and secularism. The popular band Hadag Nahash blends hip-hop, funk and soul with politically expedient Hebrew lyrics to draw attention to the complex issues facing Israeli society. The band gives a stripped-down performance at the picturesque Mahane Yehuda market in Jersualem, then invites Jacob for drinks and conversation at the lead singer's pub. He visits leading Shephardic singer Yasmin Levy at her home on the outskirts of the city, where she performs songs in the Spanish-derived Ladino language. Leading singer-songwriter David Broza invites Jacob to visit a village devoted to peace between Arabs and Jews. Broza performs amidst the vines of his family winery then takes Jacob to an informal jam session with Palestinian musicians in East Jerusalem. He travels to the Galilee region of northern Israel for a visit to Tzfat, an epicenter of the mystical Kaballah and the world's largest klezmer music festival. Next, Jacob journeys to the ancient and scenic port of Akko, before meeting up with Israeli star Mosh Ben-Ari for an unplugged performance in the magnificent Roman Theater at Caesarea. Mosh takes Jacob to his home and farm where he learns of his love for the land and the importance of agriculture in the history and identity of Israelis.

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