Shlomo Bar

Shlomo Bar

Shlomo Bar is an Israeli musician, composer, and social activist. A pioneer of ethnic music in Israel.


Born in Rabat, Morocco, in 1943, Bar emigrated to Israel a few years later. He learnt how to play the darbuka and other ethnic percussion instruments, performing in various small lineups and as a backing musician for artists such as Matti Caspi on tours. In 1976 he played in Yehoshua Sobol and Noa Chelton's "Kriza" (Nerves), a fierce play about social injustices and discrimination in Israel. Bar set to music and performed several of Sobol's songs, including "Yeladim Ze Simcha" (Children are joy), which protested a then-prevalent policy of economic discrimination. The song, as recorded a bit later by his band, "Habrera Hativit", received airplay because of the catchy tune, and was accepted at face-value by much of the Mizrachi community. Rita's cover is well-known, and lacks the acidity of the original. Bar has stated on numerous occasions that if the people chose to interpret it as a joyous song, he has no business to tell them otherwise. As a result of the play, Bar decided it was time to form his own group, "Habrera Hativit" (The natural selection, but also known in English as the Gathering). The original lineup was Samson Kehimkar, an Indian violin and sitar virtuoso, Miguel Herstein, an American guitarist, the bassist Israel Borochov, and Bar on percussion and vocals. From the start the intention was not to conform to the musical mould, neither of Israeli pop, nor of 'musikat kassetot', the common style of mizrachi music at the time. The first album, "Elei Shorashim" (Origins, or a return to roots), combined traditional Moroccan and Yiddish music, with Indian elements and motiffs, as well as new renditions of songs by Israeli poets. The songs were long, some of them running for eight minutes, and the subject matter was unusual for the time.The lineup went through several changes in the 1980s and 90s.Bar's musical influences are broad, including Bob Dylan and Miles Davies on the one hand, and classical Indian music and Jewish liturgy on the other [ "מגיל צעיר עברו לי מהפכות של הכרה. והייתי מבין הראשונים ששמעו את מיילס דיוויס, נינה סימון, בוב דילן ואחרים. עוד לפני שהם הגיעו לרדיו. אני מכיר אותם כבר ארבעים שנה. והנשמה שלי תמיד נמשכה אחרי איכות. תגיד לי מה אתה שומע ואומר לך מי אתה. שמעתי מוזיקה הודית קלאסית והבנתי למה אני קיים. לפני זה רציתי להיות אלביס, מיילס ויכולתי להעריך את התרבות הזו. אבל לא יכולתי להיות חלק ממנה. אני יכול להיות מושפע ממנה אבל לא יכולתי להיות במקומה"] .


With Habrera Hativit:

1979 - "Elei Shorashim" (Origins)
1. Tfila - A Prayer
2. Children Are Happiness - Yeladim Ze Simcha
3. In The Village Of Todra - Ezleinu Bikfar Todra
4. Dror Yikra
5. Kotzim - Thorns
6. A Moroccan Wedding - Hatuna Marokait

1980 - "Mechakim LeSamson" (Waiting for Samson)
1. Hassidic Dialogue - Du siah Hassidi
2. Spring - Aviv (Bhairavi)
3. The Love Of Theresa Dimon - Ahavata Shel Theresa Dimon
4. Walking to Caesarea - Halicha LeKeisaria
5. The Dark Girl - Shecharhoret
6. Be True - Heye Davek
7. Alone - Levad

1982 - "Chut Shazur" (Woven Thread)
1. The Market Song - Shir Hashuk
2. Sultanas Lament - Kinat Sultana
3. To God I Shall Hearken - El El Ashacher
4. Who Knew - Mi Yada
5. Bread and Garment - Lehem Beged
6. Haji Baba
7. My Field - Shdemati

1985 - "Mitoch Kelim Shvurim" (Out of Broken Vessels)
1. Thou Art Land - At Adama
2. Danino the Immigrant's Run - Ritzato Shel Haole Danino
3. Or Haganuz
4. Hama
5. My Love Shall Come to His Garden - Yavo Dodi Legano
6. A Song of Degrees - Shir Lamaalot
1988 - "Michutz LaChomot" (Outside the Walls)
1. Who's There - Mi Shama
2. When Shall Zion be Established - Matai Techonan Ir Tzion
3. E'eroch Mahalal Nivi
4. The Flute - Hehalil
5. An Air - Neima
6. Your Fingers - Et Etsbeoteicha

1991 - "Nedudim" (Wandering)
1. A Seed Sleeps - Yashen Lo Garin
2. Naked and Bare - Erom VeEria
3. Walking to Caesarea - Halicha LeKeisaria
4. I Am an Innocent Girl - Ani Tama
5. Seven Sections - Shiv'a Medorim
6. Wandering - Nedudim
7. Three Were Founded - Shlosha Nosdu
8. Honi The Circle Drawer - Honi Hameagel
9. Reaching an Understanding - Hidavrut

1993 - "Peimot Shchorot" (Black Beats)
1. Yafa Ahuvati - Beautiful is My Beloved
2. My Land to The Redeemer - Artzi Lagoel
3. The Desert Speaks - Hamidbar Medaber
4. 10/14 (a percussion piece)
5. And Then As Stream Waters - Veaz Kemei Nahal
6. Hamsa
7. A Song For Peace - Shir Lashalom
8. For Thou Art a Man - Ki Ata Adam
9. Black Beats - Peimot Shhorot (a percussion piece)

1996 - "Yachef" (Barefoot)
1. My Heart - Libi
2. The hope of God - Tikvat Hael
3. Walking to the Palace (Instrumental) - Halicha Laarmon
4. Neglected - Mezulzelet
5. He is Great - Adir Hu
6. The Immigrant Danino's Run - Ritsato Shel Haole Danino
7. A close friend - Haver Karov
8. Batash (Lit. meaning: A meeting between two elements)
9. Reveal The Story - Saper Saper
10. Lover of My Soul - Yedid Nefesh
11. Barefoot - Yahef

2003 - "Maim Ne'emanim" (Faithful Waters) - A Collection
1. Tfila
2. Yeladim Ze Simcha
3. Etzleinu Bikfar Todra
4. Kinat Sultana
5. Dror Ikra
6. Hatuna Marokait
7. Sheharhoret
8. Ahavata Shel Teresa Dimon
9. Shir Hashuk
10. Hagi Baba
11. Mi Yada
12. Ritzato Shel Haole Danino
13. At Adama
14. El El Ashacher

CD2 1. A Song of Yearning - Shir Kmiha
2. A Japanese Legend - Agada Yapanit
3. Et Etsbeoteicha
4. Hahalil
5. Halicha Lekeisaria
6. Erom Veeria
7. Hamidbar Medaber
8. Shdemati
9. Honi Hameagel
10. Ani Tama
11. Saper Saper
12. Yedid Nefesh
13. Mezulzelet
14. Haver karov
15. Zemer Nouge

2006 - "Ananim Nemuhim" (Low Clouds)
1. Low Clouds - Ananim Nemuchim
2. Genesis (Light) - Or (Bereshit)
3. The Seagulls - HaSchafim
4. And again - Veshuv
5. Da-re
6. Woman's poem - Shirat Isha
7. The Noon-Land's song - Shir Admat Hatzehoraim
8. Circles - Maagalim
9. Formless and Void - Tohu Vavohu


1994 - "David U Shlomo" (David and Solomon) - with David D'Or
1. Halleluijah - Haleluya
2. A Voice From the Heavens - Kol Mehashamayim
3. In the Village of Todra - Etzlenu Bikfar Todra
4. In Your Heart - Belibech
5. My Field - Shdemati
6. Don't Cast Me Off - Al Tashlicheni
7. Protect the World - Shmor Al Haolam
8. The Mercy Gate - Shaar Harachamim
9. A Song For Peace - Shir Lashalom
10. The Sailor's Love - Ahuvat Hasapan
11. Instrumental
12. A Prayer - Tfila
13. Comes From Love - Baa Me'ahava
14. Tfila
15. He Will Come - Hu Yavo


External links

* [ The official website]
* [ The MOOMA database (Heb)]
* [ A recent interview (Heb)]
* [,7340,L-3379881,00.html Bar on his Biblical heroes. (Heb)]

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