My dream guest for Shabbat Dinner
by Meir Bensimhon



The Bible relates that after the miraculous parting of the Red Sea, the B’nei Yisrael (The Children of Israel), sang a song. 

It was the Shirat HaYam, the Song of the Sea, which was an expression of their joy at having escaped to safety.

In the same way, Shabbat is a time to express our shared history through song. This is why I would be delighted to invite an artist I consider to be a musical genius, the Jazz bassist, singer & composer Avishai Cohen.

For me, Avishai is a symbol of Israeli multiculturalism. His songs are a mix of traditional Jewish music, Arabic, Ladino and Jazz and they have a unique style all his own. Born in 1970 in Israel, he has been called Israel's most successful jazz export and a jazz visionary of global proportions.

In 2020, Avishai Cohen will launch his 50-50-50 tour –in the year of his 50th birthday, he will perform 50 concerts in 50 countries!

Multiculturalism is hopeful – it inspires me.  I can see it as part of our part of Israel Bonds French sales team.  Our staff and investors are made up of Jews and non-Jews, all standing for Israel.

One of my favourite Avishai pieces is his melodic interpretation of the song, Shalom Aleichem. Let me share with you my personal memories of this.  I was studying in Brandeis University, near Boston, Massachusetts. Every Friday evening, my friends and I went to the local Chabad house, where Rabbi Peretz Chein and his wife Chanie welcomed students for a great Shabbat dinner.

The beginning of the Shalom Aleichem song always had a magical effect on us. It made us feel as like we were connecting with everyone in the room, like we had a second home even though we were far from our family homes and countries. The Jewish connection, the friendships, the food and the beautiful music were the essence of Shabbat atmosphere.

May you all enjoy your next Shabbat dinner in joy and song!

Meir Bensimhon oversees Business Development in the Israel Bonds offices in Paris, France


Avishai Cohen photo
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