Hadag Nahash Lights the Lights, Hits the Boards at Baruch
Hadag Nahash, came to Manhattan bringing with it music and light, power and politics. The Israeli hip hop/funk band had its audience dancing in the aisles from virtually minute one of its Sunday night performance at Baruch College. The young – and young at heart – participants (this was no “spectator” event) were enthusiastic and involved. From the blue and white balloons floating between seats and stage to the involvement of musicians and masses, it was an evening of great fun and good music
Its name literally translates as “the Snakefish;” its music mixes Western pop with Middle Eastern influences in style said to “create a sound tapestry containing influences from funk and world music.” Hadag Nahash, the band, uses music to make strong political statements through songs – and to get everyone on his or her feet, dancing through the night.
With six successful albums to date, the group creates songs that have been called “audacious and controversial,” with lyrics calling for peace, tolerance and equality, and including political and social protest combined with its unique musical blend. Led by vocalist and composer Shaanan Streett and DJ Guy Mar, the band has held a place on the Israeli hip-hop scene for more than fifteen years. It was named “Band of the Year” by Galgalatz and Reshet Gimel, Israel’s leading popular radio stations.
At a news conference just prior to the Sunday concert at which he shared the dais with Minister Yuli Edelstein, Consul General of Israel in New York Ido Aharoni, and American Jewish leaders Malcolm Hoenlein and Michael Miller, Streett clearly stated that he and his band performed not as representatives of the government of Israel but as Israelis, individuals and musicians, conveying their own message through their own music.