The Top 5 In Jewish Music by SPLASHNEWS

Articles, General — By on February 8, 2013 3:18 pm


SPLASHNEWS-It’s a new year which means it’s time for my list of  The Top 5 In Jewish Music. This past year has brought us the debut albums of many new singers including Shragee Gestetner, Tzudik, and Shauly Waldner to name a few. While these “newbies” won’t make it onto this list yet, you now see how many singers there are out there which makes it that much harder to hit the top. Not so long ago we got maybe 3+ new singers a decade. Now, we get more than that every year. So, you want to know who is the top singer this year? Who’s the new guy on the list and who was knocked off? Read on and find out. Of course this is my opinion so if you disagree, feel free to voice your own opinion below! (Last years rating is in parenthesis)

1. Avraham Fried (1)-Fried has shown us with his latest album “Keep Climbing” that not only is he at the peak of his career, but he will continue to climb. His voice on this stellar album is the best that I’ve ever heard from him. But of course one album won’t give someone the top spot. Avraham Fried also continues to perform in large concerts all over the world. Oh, did I mention that almost every concert is a sell out? When it comes to stage presence, Fried is “it”!

2. Lipa Schmeltzer (2)-One of the most controversial singers today, Lipa has shown us that he will do anything to please his fans. Although his album “Meimkeh D’Libah” was a work of art, he realized that the average joe can’t really relate to that so he created “Leap of Faith”. In a SPLASHNEWS last year Lipa said “I realized that the way people listen to music has changed so I need to have catchy, easy to learn songs, but I also want the art so I will mix and blend both”. While the  album was well recieved, I am still waiting for another album like A Poshiter Yid which may have sold more copies than any other CD in history. Ever heard of “Wake Up”, “Shelo Osani Goy”, “Yener”, “Binyan Adei Ad”, and “Hentelach”? Yeh, they’re all on that album! Regarding performing, if you look that word up in a dictionary, it might just say Lipa Schmeltzer. You want to know why we have so many singers today? Read what it says above after the bold number 2.

3. Yaakov Shwekey (5)-Last year I wrote that Shwekey was losing it a little bit and he had to bring his music up to date. This year he released “Cry No More” which I was very impressed by. He had two songs of the likes we have not heard from Shwekey. ‘Lo Yaavod” and “Cry No More” showed me that he can steer away from the typical if he wants. While I think he still has ways to go before he can reclaim the status he had in the “Racheim” days, he is on to a good start. We can expect many more years of music from him. While Lipa had the most influence in music the past ten years, Yaakov is close behind with many singers who see him and realize that they can do it too.

4. Shloime Gertner (4)-Shloime I think has found his place in music and is comfortable where he is. He released his third album a few months ago and is still very popular world wide from America to Eretz Yisroel and everywhere in between. Oh, sorry England let me start over; Shloime gertner is the King of Jewish Music…..LOL. He is also a great performer who can hold his ground no matter who is singing next to him. His voice is very unique and pleasant to listen to which I think is his biggest strong point when it comes to retaining a spot on this list in the years to come.

5. Benny Friedman (-)-Benny has taken the music world by the storm. He is gaining world popularity faster than you can say Yesh Tikvah! While until this latest album he was a household name in the States, “Yesh Tikvah” has been making its way through every corner of the land across the pond. His title track was even used as a campaign song for one the biggest political parties in Israel. He also might have the most original music video that I have ever seen. If you haven’t see “Maaleh Ani” yet, you are missing out. The most amazing thing is that every time I think about how big this guy is, I remember that his career is only just getting started! The best of luck to him and everyone else in Jewish music.

-So who was on this list last year and didn’t make it this year? Let’s see if you remember…Let’s just say that it was a tough call to put Friedman and Gertner ahead of him so we actually took a poll and based the listing on that. Let’s hear what you, the readers of JMR have to say.

-P.S. Once again I have to write that I didn’t list MBD because he is officially retired or at least he claims he is!

Facebook comments:


  1. yanki says:

    Um… Is Yisroel Werdyger chopped liver?

  2. Chossid says:

    Nice move putting on Benny! In my opinion, Shwekey’s rating is a bit over done in general. His previous cd over-all was really not that great. He gets tremendous publicity from his huge concerts, and that’s where his name is so known.

  3. SPLASHNEWS says:

    @yanki- Yisroel Werdyger is great but he would go on another list of top singers who don’t sing at concerts and in general keep a lower profile. His name would go along with Shlomie Daskal, Shloime Taussig and other Chassidishe singers.
    @Chossid- This list took into account the entire world and not just the U.S. That said, while I may not say Shwekey is the best in America, he is HUGE in Eretz Yisroel. To prove it, just look at the massive concerts you were talking about! How many other singers can fill up all those seats?
    -Thanx for your opinions!

  4. jay says:

    In my opinion daskal iz still top with out any concerts

  5. Chossid says:

    Well splash, I gotta agree with you. You are certainly right and somehow Shwekey appeals to our Israeli brothers more then he does to us here in the states. Though all singer have an easier time in Israel to fill up the halls.

    On a side note, why are American concerts never as good as the Israeli ones? Israeli concerts always have a beautiful stage, full band (not 7 pieces), and in general is done with much more prestige. Someone has to raise the standard of our concerts here. I believe if someone would make a concert on that level, they would attract a full crowd. It has to be done more often.

    And thank you splash for your great articles. Keep ’em coming!

  6. Chossid says:

    And I realize that ohad made it off your list. Though that is fair, it is sad to see. It seems he will join the group which made it big only for a short time, only to be stuck behind and never able to catch up. Personally, I thought he would turn out so…

  7. SPLASHNEWS says:

    @Chossid-Regarding your comment about the concerts in Israel, you are right and it is interesting to compare famous concerts like the HASC concert which doesn’t come close to the productions of much smaller Israeli concerts. I have seen that even the smallest private shows in Israel have light screens, multimedia, smoke effects, etc. Maybe someone has a good reason for this?

  8. Chossid says:

    Splash: To simply put it, cost for everything in Israel is much cheaper than in the states. The cost of production etc. is enormous.

    But even more then that, in Israel there is a very high standard. Everyone is expecting to see every concert done five star. If not, that production team/singer will go out of business. But we go for very bare concerts and then rave about it saying “that was the best concert ever!” – we hold by very low standards when it comes to making concerts. And Hasc and Ohel know they can get away with it!

    It is sad… Can you imagine a high quality concert, with big bands and great video production etc. etc. Every Hasc concert? Right now they are producing year after year very low quality concerts… In production, band size, and video production…

  9. mbd and fried fan says:

    need to disagree there with your comment on fried`s voice being the best its ever been

    really ?

    you want to listen to him on an early hasc and now?

    true his voice is deeper and richer but he can`t hit half the notes he used to be able to, and in most concerts he allows the choir to sing half the songs for him

    he is still one of the greats but i absolutly disagree with the `his voice is at his best ever stage` remark

  10. adam shasha says:

    ok my thoughts
    not surprised to see ohad missing, lipa is still amazing but i think he is losing it
    loving gertner there and beeny too!
    im surprised boruch levine is missing as he is an amazing singer and composer

    but yes – its a very hard list to formulate

  11. The Worlds Largest Music Fan says:

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    Also to
    SPASHNEWS is there any way I could contacts you?
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  12. SPLASHNEWS says:

    @TWLMF, To you and anyone who wishes to send a private comment or question-

  13. Nochum says:

    8th Day?

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