Despite Terror Attacks, Matisyahu Performs in Jerusalem
JERUSALEM – It hasn’t been an easy month for Jerusalem residents, as a wave of Palestinian stabbing attacks has continued to terrorize the capital. Against the backdrop of this escalating violence, Israelis have been signing up in hoards for self-defense courses and purchasing pepper spray — and short videos depicting self-defense moves and protective measures against stabbers have flooded social network sites.
But the tense atmosphere didn’t stop thousands of Israelis from attending the much anticipated Matisyahu performance on Saturday night at Jerusalem’s Sultan Pool, right outside the Old City.
During the concert, Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat came onstage to thank Jerusalem police and security forces for all their efforts. He told the thousands of fans that they were fighting the war against terror just by showing up to the concert and maintaining their routine.
Matisyahu, 36, who was born Matthew Miller, offered words of support to concert goers, saying; “it [is] good to be back in Yerushalayim,” and “Jerusalem stay strong.” He performed songs from his new album, “Akeda,” as well as old favorites, like “Jerusalem” and “One Day.”
The Jewish reggae star recently made summer headlines for standing up to the BDS movement in August, when he was disinvited from a music festival in Spain for refusing to state his position on Palestinian statehood. The organizers re-invited Matisyahu to perform after harsh condemnations from the Spanish government and Jewish leaders.
Matisyahu stated during a press conference in Tel Aviv prior to the performance that it was important for “American Jews like myself to come to Israel no matter what’s happening here.”
Following Saturday night’s performance, photos and clips of Matisyahu’s Jerusalem concert quickly appeared on Facebook, with some using the hashtags: “#Matisyahu” “#ignoringStabpocalypse,” while other fans thanked the Jewish reggae star for the “timely” concert.