When Baruch Sholom Blesofsky auditioned for the COLlive ‘A Jewish Star‘ Jewish singing competition with a quirky rendition of the song ‘Im Atem Meshamerim,’ it was not his first foray into the music field.
Born to a Lubavitch family in Crown Heights which boasts 4 generations of musical talent and love for Chazzanus, Baruch Sholom has played guitar and sang on various occasions.
But it was through the competition that he quickly gained an avid fan base that rooted for him even after the 3 judges lowered the critical hatchet on his daring style. A star was indeed born.
In a conversation with Yehuda Ceitlin, Editor of COLlive.com, Blesofsky tells how recent tragedies in the community led to him composing his new song “Tell It To Them.”
• How’s life?
It’s cool, Baruch Hashem.
• Then why such a sad song?
I was not crying about my life.
• Not even about ‘A Jewish Star‘?
I’m glad I did it. It gave me an insight into what people like, I got to hear criticism and feel the market.
• Any mention of you on COLlive.com draws comments. Is it the same in real life?
Yes. Baruch Hashem I have a lot of people approach me with opinions on how to sing and play. It’s all good…
• Did any of that influence your new song?
What inspired this song was the idea that we are always told about Emuna in Hashem, but how can we not feel hurt when we see someone crying, going through pain and suffering? It’s hard not to react and just say ‘it’s all fine.’
• Are you referring to a specific tragedy?
The song started when I heard about a boy who was run over by a bus in Boro Park, and I recorded the final version after reading about the special life of Nosson Deitsch. It really hurt me that they will not have a future and I was thinking to myself what their mothers are going through.
• The clip features photos from the Holocaust and Mumbai.
I don’t want to sound too morbid, but all pain has a similarity to it. Whether it makes the headlines or not.
• How did you go about recording it?
2 weeks after Lag BaOmer I called a wonderful friend of mine, Sholom Lieberman, and we sat down and did the song from 1am until 7am. It was an awesome experience. I felt like I got a lot off my chest.
• For a bochur in his early 20’s you carry a heavy burden…
A lot of people are mistaken about my age. But you’re forgetting that most people feel like this – I just have a way to express it in music.
• Why did you use Auto-Tune (an audio processor used to correct off-key vocals)?
The Jewish music industry is very stubborn in seeing music. Everyone is a singer, but few are musicians. I used auto-tune because I felt it suited the style of the song.
• So are you a singer or a musician?
I might be a Shliach one day.
• But would you rather be backstage than on the stage itself?
I am into getting my song presented well. So either I sing or I have someone that would sing it the way I liked.
• I hear you have something going on with Mordechai Ben David.
That is true. I started writing music for them a few months ago.
• Who is “them”?
The Werdygers. I sent a song to Yeedle and he showed it to his father and since then they took interest in my compositions.
• So are the Werdygers singers or musicians?
Musicians. No doubt. MBD and Yeedle are more than singers, they are artists. MBD not only has a great voice, he also gives a lot in his song. There’s a story. You can tell what he is going through when he sings. Shlomo Carlebach was the same in his own way.
• Are you working with them on other things too?
Yes. All I can say is that I am privileged to be working with them.
• How about your own album?
I’m not doing my own per se. Our family is working on a Blesofsky brothers album.
• What’s in store?
My brothers and I will be contributing songs to this album. We won’t be singing as a group. Each will bring his own songs. But there will be a ‘Blesofsky sound’ to it. We’re going for very cool sounds.
Not at all. It’s going to be a very conservative sound. I might even be doing Chazzanus. We’ll have more details for you when the time comes.
VIDEO: Tell It To Them by Baruch Sholom Blesofsky
LYRICS: Tell it to them
Many are wondering why I’m crying.
many are asking, why i don’t smile.
they say that all I see is an illusion of my mind,
the day will come (and) it will be alright.
But tell it to the ones
that were never held in their mother’s hands
Tell it to the ones
that were never kissed as a child
Tell it to the ones
who were in the camps
and saw their family killed before their eyes
Tell it to them
then ask why I don’t smile
So let us make a prayer for all those out there crying,
that very soon we will smile.