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Idan Raichel: The Groove is Global

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Friday February 15, 2013

From Cleveland Jewish News

The Idan Raichel Project
For Raichel, the groove is global
By: Carlo Wolff

Idan Raichel, a composer, singer and keyboardist who is a superstar in his native Israel, will make his Cleveland debut Saturday, Feb. 16, fronting a seven-piece band conversant – make that eloquent – in many languages.

On the basis of Idan Raichel Project videos and MP3s, the show should rock: the dreadlocked, casually attired Raichel lays folkloric lyrics over pulsating rhythm tracks, often with an electronic tinge. His voice, rough-hewn and warm, floats on grooves that braid Middle Eastern, Latin and African strains.

In a telephone conversation and subsequent email, the Tel Aviv resident suggested he aims to bring his music – part jam band, part jazz, resolutely ethnic and just as resolutely modern – to places he cannot yet enter for political reasons. For now, he said, he is the first “to bring the world music in Israel to the mainstream.”

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