David Broza Talks Peace, Love, and Understanding
At the recent meeting of the Commission on Social Action of Reform Judaism (CSA), Israel singer/songwriter David Broza performed songs from his latest album, a collaborative project in which music is used as a conduit to discuss peace. Broza’s newest album, East Jerusalem/West Jerusalem, is an effort to bridge the Jewish-Arab divide in Israel. Describing his album and the efforts behind its creation, he says:
“It’s better than talking. A lot of people dream and say, ‘I want to do, I want to do, I want to do.’ The interesting thing is to do and stop talking.”
The album is a compilation of coexistence anthems by Israeli, Palestinian and American musicians. In his presentation as the keynote speaker at the CSA conference, Broza talked about the relationship with Palestinian musicians he has built over the years, which you can read more about in a New York Times article called “Seeking to Bridge the Arab-Jewish Divide With Music.”
In addition to speaking about his family’s experiences as Israelis, his musical background, and his most recent project, Broza also sang several titles from his new album. One song that struck a chord with attendees is called “The Lion’s Den,” which is based on a poem written by Judea Pearl, the father of journalist Daniel Pearl, who was killed in Pakistan in February of 2002.
Broza also spoke about the song (What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding." On the album, the song is sung by Broza and the Jerusalem Youth Chorus, an ensemble of high school students from East and West Jerusalem who sing together and engage in dialogue. The last song of the evening was his most famous song, "Yehiye Tov," which translates to “it will be all right.” Broza explained that he wrote the song based on a poem by Yonatan Geffen in 1977 on the eve of Anwar Sadat’s historic visit to Israel. The emotion in the room was palpable as Broza talked about the expectancy and hope of Sadat’s visit and what this might’ve meant for peace in the Middle East. He explained that since the song was initially written, he’s written several new verses as different events have taken place in Israel.
We are grateful to have had David Broza share his commitment to music as a conduit for peace. To learn more about David Broza’s most recent project, and hear samples of the songs on the album, visit his website.