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Light rock: Moshav band plays menorah lighting

Driving out darkness: The Israeli rock band Moshav, which sings about bringing light into the world, will play live at Grand Army Plaza for the first night of Hanukkah.
Brooklyn Paper
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They are feeling fired up!

Israeli rock band Moshav is ready to drive out the darkness with its spiritual music on the first night of Hanukkah, while hundreds gather to light a 32-foot menorah in Grand Army Plaza. The Festival of Lights is especially meaningful for Moshav, says its singer and percussionist, because the band’s songs are about bringing more light into the world — and because two of its five members grew up in the neighborhood where, according to legend, the eight-day Hanukkah miracle occurred.

“A lot of what our music is about is spreading light in the world and spreading consciousness, and we’re excited to be part of an event that stands for that,” said Yehuda Solomon. “Hanukkah specifically is a very special time for us. It brings us back to our home and our youth and the whole story is very powerful in our life.”

The formerly world’s-largest menorah has stood tall in Grand Army Plaza each Hanukkah since 1984, and rabbis from the Chabad of Park Slope host a lighting ceremony every year with hot latkes, music, and dancing. Last year’s ceremony attracted more than 1500 people to celebrate the Festival of Lights, and organizers hope the music and increased attention at this year’s ceremony will draw double that number, said Rabbi Shimon Hecht.

“It’s going to be bigger and great. Our goal is to make it New York State’s greatest Hanukkah celebration,” he said. “I’m sure there will be dancing because the band is going to create a very festive mood. Being that it’s Hanukkah, we figure bring the spirit of the holiday to the streets and let people enjoy the holiday.

And whether you wait up for Hannukah Harry or Santa Claus, the kickoff concert and ceremony is something everyone can enjoy — just like Moshav’s newest album “New Sun Rising,” said Solomon.

“Our music stay true to our Jewish roots, but it’s universal,” he said. “The whole message in there is about carrying each other, starting over, and all it takes is to light a flame and start all over — at the end of the day, if you take a little light, you can light up the world with a little flame.”

Moshav concert and Lighting Ceremony at Grand Army Plaza (Flatbush Avenue at Eastern Parkway in Prospect Heights, www.worldslargestmenorah.com). Dec. 24 at 7 pm. Free.

Reach reporter Julianne Cuba at (718) 260–4577 or by e-mail at jcuba@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @julcuba.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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