Posted by: Liza Rosenberg | February 3, 2008

80s Music Video #49

When we got married, we chose to go to Jamaica for our honeymoon. I had gone there for Spring Break during my junior year at university, and having had a taste of only one part of this beautiful island, I was anxious to see what else Jamaica had to offer. And, if I was being truly honest with myself, I wanted to go back to Jamaica for the music. I wanted a holiday infused with the sounds of reggae. I love reggae music. I love the sound and the laid-back rhythms. I love the look of the people who love reggae – from the casual, tie-dyed attire to the long, flowing dreadlocks.

I was fascinated by the Jamaicans we met during our stay, not only for their outlook on life, but also for their impressive knowledge of and admiration for Israel. We were there as Rabin and Arafat were shaking hands on the White House lawn, and listened to the ceremony from our poolside chaise lounges, while speakers camouflaged as rocks broadcast periodic news updates. Whenever we told people that we were from Israel, whether it was our horseback riding instructor or the shopkeepers in the market in Ocho Rios, we were always greeted warmly, and often found ourselves in conversations peppered with intelligent questions and comments.

And of course, reggae was everywhere. It caused my body to sway while eating breakfast and lunch, it made me tap my toes on every day trip, it had me out of my chair and dancing at the wedding we attended in a small gazebo on the resort grounds, where we were the witnesses and only guests for a couple we had met shortly after arriving on the island. They had paid the hotel’s welcome band to play at their wedding, which had been presided over by the local Jamaican minister – one of the more memorable experiences of our time there.

While Jamaica’s Bob Marley is undoubtedly the first person one thinks of when they think of reggae music (and I am a huge Bob Marley fan), I’d have to say that one of my favorite reggae songs was actually written and sung by an artist from Côte d’Ivoire. “Jerusalem” was released in 1986, and is singer-songwriter Alpha Blondy‘s song of hope for unity between different religions. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s something we should all be hoping for these days.

Jerusalem
Alpha Blondy

Baruch ata Adonaï
Baruch ha’ba Yerushalayim

From the Bible to the Koran
Revelation in Jerusalem
Shalom, salam alekoum

You can see Christians, Jews and Muslims
Living together and praying
Amen! Let’s give thanks and praises

Baruch ata Adonaï
Baruch ha’ba Yerushalayim

Jerusalem here I am
Jerusalem je t’aime
Jerusalem here I am
Jerusalem je t’aime

Israela yakirati
Israela yakirati
Ani ohev otach
Israela yakirati

From the Bible to the Koran
Revelation time
Shalom, salam alekoum

You can see Christians, Jews and Muslims
Living together and praying…
Amen! Let’s give thanks and praises

Baruch ata adonaï
Baruch aba Yerushalayim
Jerusalem here I am
Jerusalem je t’aime

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Responses

  1. One learns something new every (Sun)day 😉

  2. I don’t think I know this one- but I also got married around that time- Sept. 12, 1993!!

  3. i am listening to this song right now. i have been high while hearing this songs in a regguae cd with other bob marley songs so many times. but whats funny im the only one who understands the words in hebrew or feel the message differently from my friends of even girlfriend. im from bethlehem actually. and i thought that this was funny. ” Rabin and Arafat were shaking hands on the White House lawn ” haha.. well i lived in bethlehem for 16 years. been to usa for 6 months, italy for 1 year. and now im in honduras.. my mom is from here.. i am 22 years old and i teach italian and english.. but im a casual smoker. and i think the only way that there would be peace in israel is that all the people there would smoke a joint together and hear this song..


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