Jo Amar

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    YW Moderator-42

    Copied from another web site:

    New York – World renowned Moroccan singer Jo Amar passed away in New York on Friday at age 79. Amar was an Israeli icon for the first decades of the state’s existence, a favorite of the newly arrived Sephardic immigrants in the country.

    Jo (Yosef) Amar was born in Morocco in 1930, and came to Israel in 1956. Considered the first singer to introduce Moroccan Jewish liturgical music in Israel, his hits include Yismah Moshe, Shalom LeVen Dodi, Barcelona, Song of the Drunkard, Ani Havatzelet HaSharon, and many more.

    Amar, who immigrated to Israel in 1956, pioneered the fusion sound of Israeli eastern “mizrachi” music, merging classical Jewish Sephardic and Arabic tunes with Western musical sensibilities, along with lyrics that discussed the personal and social angst and joys of Middle Eastern immigrants who sought to find a place in Israeli society. He was also a highly-regarded cantor

    In 1970, Amar settled in New York, performing in the USA and in Europe as a cantor, as well as a teacher in cantorial workshops. He also published an anthology of Moroccan Jewish liturgical music.


    Amar’s more than 20 albums include two that he recorded with the Israeli Andalusian Orchestra in 2000. Jo Amar has residences in both Israel and Los Angeles, and has four children and ten grandchildren.

    Amar’s body will arrive in Israel on Saturday night. His funeral will take place Sunday afternoon at Yad Rambam, the moshav that was his residence in Israel in recent years.


    Whoa, I’d forgotton all about him. I thought he was much older.

    I thoroughly enjoyed his music and even today if I hear his songs they evoke wonderful memories of my teens. He had a very distinctive voice and sound and in fact he was banned in our school as being far too ‘modern!’


    Hehi zichro baruch !! he was one of the original great singers, with Shlomele z’l and -jibodel lechaim tovim- ben zion shenker. We will miss him.


    I believe Kol Zimra’s Benny Amar is his nephew;

    YW Moderator-42

    There is a free download of Jo Amar singing at HASC 2 on mostlymusic

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