The Hamilton craze is sweeping the nation, and even the Jewish community isn’t exempt. Case in point: Recently, at the annual convention of the American Conference of Cantors and the Guild of Temple Musicians, several cantors led a Shacharit (morning) service that included several prayers set to tunes from the smash hit by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
And it wasn’t the only secular music to take center stage. Just two days earlier, a few colleagues and I had led a Maariv (evening) service that included “Be Here Now” by Ray LaMontagne and “Grateful” by John Bucchino.
What is it that makes secular music useful and appropriate in a service setting? Or is it?