Way back in the day, I was introduced to the music of Safam. It was their beautiful melodies that hooked me.
Recently I discovered that their music has finally been uploaded to YouTube. Not only are the melodies heart-warming, but the lyrics are very uplifting. While the band members may not be fully observant, their music conveys a strong cultural tie to the land of Israel and other Jewish themes.
World of our Fathers depicts the story of an immigrant family chasing the American Dream. Leaving Mother Russia tells the story of the Russian Refusenik Anatoly (Natan) Sharansky. Natan was incarcerated from 1977-1986 in a Siberian Labor Camp before an international group secured his freedom. Natan went on to serve in the Israeli Knesset in several capacities.
When Natan heard the song that was dedicated to his struggle and written in his honor, in the days before Glasnost and Perestroika, his reaction was somewhat to the effect of “Mother Russia? Why Mother Russia? No mother would treat her children this way.”