Thursday, June 15, 2006

Matisyahu is Artist of the Month on Xbox Live

I was surprised when I recently saw an enormous advertisement for Xbox Live, Microsoft's online videogame service, on the 'net which stated that Matisyahu was Artist of the Month on Xbox Live. The videogaming crowd, I thought, wasn't one that liked Matisyahu much, but apparently Microsoft thinks otherwise. They even wrote a little piece on him, albeit a kind of silly one in my opinion:

Artist of the Month:


Reggae has always been associated with faith and religion. Its roots are deeply entrenched in the Rastifari movement, songs about oppression, freedom, and in praise of Jah. Starting in New York, Matisyahu has begun to explode into the popular consciousness, singing not about Jah, but about Jehovah. The former Matthew Paul Miller lends both his Hassidic name and vocal stylings to the band.

After gaining popularity and street cred with various performances in New York, where the band is based, and on the East Coast, Matisyahu appeared on Last Call with Carson Daly, where they were introduced as "the most exciting thing happening in music today." Praise has continued to be poured upon the band as their public image expands. Their stunning combination of reggae and dub styles, often mixed with rap and beatbox elements, has been compared to such bands as Sublime, and while the music may not be "pure" enough for reggae traditionalists, it has served to elevate reggae music in the minds of a whole new generation.

Matisyahu's third album, Youth, was released in March to vast critical acclaim and immediate success. It hit number one on Billboard's Digital Album charts, tracking downloads, almost immediately. Matisyahu is touring this summer in support of Youth. Be sure to check out the free Matisyahu content offered on Xbox Live® to see and hear something completely different. A band fronted by a guy who takes his faith as seriously as his music, Matisyahu is a rare and exciting new voice in music. Check out tour dates and samples at their official site.

One thing, though. Don't expect to catch the band performing on Friday nights or Saturdays. That just ain't kosher.

I was thinking that his popularity had significantly decreased as of late, but judging by his status as Artist of the Month, it seems to indicate the opposite. They managed to not mention the word Jewish or Judaism even once throughout the whole writeup, except when alluding to it by including 'kosher' and 'hassidic,' which I guess have become a part of our cultural vocabulary by now. Well, if anyone has an XBox, then you can get free Matisyahu content off the Marketplace and apparently even chat with the man himself (click on the image). I don't, but I'll be fine with his amazing albums that I already have.


Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

Not only do they not mention "Jew" or "Jewish," they say that he sings about "Jehova" which has a whole 'nother connotation! Now that just ain't kosher.

Thu Jun 15, 01:43:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Fedora Black said...

It's a bit ironic, as "Ja-h" is actually used as a name for Hashem, while "Jehovah" is a goyish misunderstanding of Hashem's four-letter name.

Fri Jun 16, 01:28:00 PM 2006  

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