How Judaism Helped Me Find My Favorite Song

May 10, 2019
Sam Hass

Orange, Connecticut, United States

Class of 2021

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For about three years I’ve been involved in a Jewish organization called JTE- Jewish Teen Education. Members are given the opportunity to participate in two classes each week, and every semester, I’ve been a student in “Here And There,” which is taught by the two Israeli emissaries in my community.

The emissaries are an essential part of the Jewish community here in New Haven- they volunteer as educators in our community the year before they enter the army, going to the different syngagogues, teaching at each Hebrew school, and forging bonds with Jews in the area!

This year I became close friends with the emissaries, Noa and Ziv, through my JTE class, and perhaps the biggest bond that Ziv and I have shared is our love of stand up comedy. We LOVE comedy. It pushes boundaries, creates conversation, and it’s irony serves as a satirical commentary on society- what’s not to enjoy? One comedian that Ziv introduced me to is Bo Burnham, a musically talented stand-up comedian who uses melody and rhymes to help prove his points. One of Burnham’s hit songs is “Straight White Male,” a sadistically ironic ballad of the woes of a straight white male.

I immediately fell in love with Burnham’s style and wanted to find more of his material, so naturally, I googled him, and his website,, popped up. One of his pages is titled “Things.” He describes the page as “Where [he] post things that I think are really great.” So I looked around at the things he loves and my eyes fell upon a youtube link to Anderson .Paak and the Free Nationals. I clicked on it and immediately fell in love with the sound, the simplicity, the bass, the music. The song was “Come Down” by Anderson .Paak, and it’s by far one of the best songs ever written. Though it’s one of his lesser known songs, it’s just as wonderful, if not more, than his other ones. And get this- the song starts and ends with the Hatikvah! Full circle, amiright??!

I highly suggest you go watch “Make Happy” by Bo Burnham on Netflix, and listen to “Come Down” by Anderson .Paak!

Sam Hass is a BBG from Connecticut Valley Region and she loves ultimate frisbee.

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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