Hebrew to Star in New R &B Album

The Hebrew language has gotten a new fan. India.Arie*, an American R &B and Soul singer-songwriter is teaming up with Israeli musician Idan Raichel for her fifth album “Open Door.” India.Arie has frequently collaborated with artists from around the world and her new album with Raichel will include songs in both Hebrew and English.India.Arie doesn’t actually speak Hebrew but says that Raichel translated the Hebrew lyrics she sings in the album for her.Idan Raichel is a veritable Israeli superstar. The singer-songwriter and musician came to prominence on the Israeli music scene with the album “The Idan Raichel Project” in 2002. Raichel approached 70 musicians to join with him in recording the album, and the intoxicating mix of ethnic tunes and rhythms from Arabia and Africa, Israel, Yemen, Ethiopia, and Latin America, became an instant hit.India.Arie and Raichel have already worked together, singing together at the Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony in Oslo this past December and playing at concerts in Los Angeles and Atlanta.One of the most exciting events at which the two artists performed was at a concert in Washington on Martin Luther King Day in January 2010, at which U.S. President Barak Obama was present. They performed the beautiful and haunting song Mei Nahar (נהר מי), meaning Waters of the River in the Hebrew language which received a standing ovation from the President. Comparing allegorically the flowing waters of a river to the days of a person’s life, the song continues with the theme of water, comparing the narrator’s thirst for water with her thirst to be with the one she loves.These are the days of your life The waters of your life Washed in the current That begins with the first rain……Even if I drink the entire ocean It will not quench my thirst For another day close to you For another day in your armsIf, like India.Arie, you’re interested in learning some of the basics of the Hebrew language when you next visit Israel, you can stop by Ulpan-Or and we’ll be happy to give you a crash course.*It’s unclear what the period is for, if you know please write in and tell us!


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