The band Rockiah has released a music video entitled "The Call." The song and video is a call for Jewish people to make aliyah and return to Israel. The song was written and composed by the husband and wife team of Yehuda and Rikva David who moved from the United States to Beit Shemesh.
Music Video Calls for Aliyah
"Whether we are learning in yeshiva or fighting in the army, we're all in this together and everyone has a role to play," says Rivka David.
Arutz Sheva - Israel National News spoke to the Davids about the song. "When my husband asked me to put some English lyrics to a melody that he composed, the first thing that came to my mind was to write a song about the history of the Jewish exile," Rivka David states. "The ultimate goal is the redemption of our people. That's what I feel most strongly about."
As far as working together, the wife and mother of five states, "It's great to be able to work on a project together as a team which I guess is what marriage is really about, each person helping the other to fulfill their potential in life." It is Yehuda who performs all the vocals and guitar work on the track. Keyboards and backup vocals are performed by Ariel Isaacson.
The video, which can be seen on YouTube and other places on the interview juxtaposes before-and-after photos of Israel. For example, pictures of the original Hurva Synagogue in Jerusalem are displayed, then the sole remaining arch after its destruction, and finally the rebuilt synagogue as it appears today. Other shots show Nefesh B'Nefesh plane landings and other positive, uplifting images.
"The video is about recognizing what amazing times we are living in," Rivka states. "That after so many years of exile the words of the prophets are all being realized, we are returning to our land from the four corners of the earth and many are returning to their religion as well. Sometimes we forget to step back and look at the bigger picture. Whether we are learning in yeshiva or fighting in the army, we are all in this together and everyone has a role to play."
The Davids wanted a mix of different Jewish communities making aliyah in the video to display a sense of unity. But it wasn't until the final version was released that they realized a photo of their own brother-in-law, David Orenstein, who edited the video, was inserted amongst the photos of immigrants from Russia, Yemen, and Ethiopia.
As far as the music scene in Beit Shemesh is concerned, the David family considers the city to be more family oriented with less of a night life. However, there seems to be plenty of musicians in town, such as Yosef Karduner, Nachman Seltzer, Ari Goldwag, Shemesh Music recording studios and the annual ShemeshFest music festival organized by veteran concert promoter Jonty Zwebner, another local.
Beit Shemesh has been in the news lately because of tension between diverse religious streams. Rivka David says that in her opinion the incidents have been blown out of proportion.
"I went to the grocery store and there was a chassid standing next to me in line," Rivka comments. "When it came time to pay my bill, I was short 40 agurot, so I was about to put one of the items back. But before I could, the chassid paid the extra 40 agurot for me. You won't hear about that on the news." Both Yehuda and Rivka say they consider Beit Shemesh a great place to have made aliyah to and are impressed by social services and community life.
In addition to "The Call" video, the Rockiah band has released one CD entitled "Bonei Yerushalayim" and regularly performs weddings and bar mitzvahs. Their next concert is March 21st at the weekly Wednesday night show at Assaf's Cave on Mount Zion, part of Music N Art at Mount Zion series, adjacent to the Tomb of King David.