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Israeli patriotic songs

Dave Stuntz asks:

>Is there an Israeli equivalent to "America the Beautiful", meaning a piece
>which is patriotic but more lovely and much more beloved than the national
>anthem, with no "official" status? Does that make sense?

I'm answering back to the list, because I think this answer may be valuable
to a few people.

I forwarded Dave's question to a friend who sings (degree in music
education from Syracuse) who is now a librarian at Jerusalem College of
Technology [JCT], and here's Chana's response:

>Tons of songs - this is a genre known as "shirei eretz yisrael
>ha-yafah" (songs of beautiful Israel). It was popular up until
>the "peace" movement made it un-cool to be patriotic. All of
>the old songs with a girl holding a guitar, long straight hair
>and high squeaky voice were these songs.
>Start with Naomi Shemer - anything of hers. There are lots of
>arrangements of Yerushalayim Shel Zahav - I think there's a
>Gil Adema (aka "Mr. LooLooLoo") where only the sopranos have to
>sing the text and everybody else does (what else...) loolooloo.
>After all, it's quite a bit of text for a non-Hebrew speaker.
>Btw, Hatikva [Israeli national anthem] is a very nice song.
>Easy to sing, famous melody -
>it's not three octaves like the Star Spangled Banner.
>Or, if you want something with more of a beat, try Shlomo
>Carlebach's "Yerushalayim". It has less text.
>I just realized that these suggestions are not "Israel" but
>I just asked the guy who runs the JCT kiosk and he said Y'lem
>shel zahav. Very scientific survey. And I phoned one of the
>secretaries and she also said the same. There are some army
>marches but the most famous one has no text. They play it
>non-stop on Independance Day while trying to do flag routines
>(Israelis are NOT GOOD at that although they always try...).
>It's pretty easy too (the army band is not exactly the Tijuana
>Does that answer your question?

Hope this helps,

Nina Gilbert

Nina Gilbert
Music Department, University of California-Irvine
ngilbert(a); NLGilbert(a)
voice mail: 949-824-3854; department fax: 949-824-4914
updated 1/00
photos of 11/23 concert at

Dear Listers,

In a message dated 2/16/00 12:05:06 PM, ngilbert(a) writes:

>>I just asked the guy who runs the JCT kiosk and he said Y'lem
>>shel zahav.

Maybe I'm stupid--but I am Jewish, and had to look at this twice to figure it
out. Just in case you couldn't figure it out too, "Y'lem shel zahav" is not
another tune, it's a shorthand for "Yerushalyim Shel Zahav" of Naomi Shemer.

There are so many lovely patriotic songs from the '60s through the mid-'80s
(all those conflicts were good for something, I guess....), let alone so many
from before the turn of the century until Statehood in 1948. But for
universality, I would say that you can't go wrong with "Y'rushalyim Shel

Best wishes,

Steve Barnett
Barnett Music Productions
on August 20, 2005 10:00pm

desearia hacerme con una partitura del himno de israel, me parece una musica entra