Thursday, August 11, 2011

Top recording artists, culturally inspired

North America, multicultural melting pot that it is, seems to be a hotspot lately for the music industry's top hit makers who honour Judaism in song.

The hip hop king of New York, Jay-Z, raps about "black bar mitzvahs" on his new collaborative album The Throne with Kanye West. California's global chart topping super group the Black Eyed Peas shout "Mazel Tov" and "L'Chaim" in their number one song "I Gotta Feeling".

Full Lyric "Fill up my cup (Drink)/Mazel Tov (L'Chaim)..."

Found mostly in pockets, yet making a greater splash on the scene now is the 'blewish' community. Those who are black and Jewish, recently had delivered to them a theme song via the popular spoof site Funny or Die. In the online video that went viral, crossing the border up here to Canada on a a number of Jewish websites, Bridesmaid's star Kali Hawk and blewish actress Kat Graham (Bonnie on the The Vampire Diaries) produced a parody of Wiz Khalifa's hit rap track "Black and Yellow" called of course "Black and Jewish".

Canada's own artists have called on Jewish-isms and practices while on tour and while working their craft. Pop sensation Justin Bieber is known for paying homage to his Jewish manager and members of the crew, reciting the Shema every night before going on stage.

To the world, Canada's Jewish hip hop king reigns supreme. We're talking about Drake of course. The rising superstar jumped from the small screen of TV's drama Degrassi:The Next Generation to entertain the much larger audience of the music-listening masses with an ever increasing number of solo and collaborative singles professing elements of his cultural pride. Claiming his fame in 2009, Drake displayed for all to see his blinged-out Chai (symbolizing "life") necklace on the cover that re-launched Vibe in December of the same year.

Perhaps as music is known to soothe the savage beast, its power can further spread the positive messages Judaism's teachings and practices can offer to the world.

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