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Asaf Avidan (Hebrew: ??? ??????; born March 23, 1980) is an Israeli singer-songwriter and musician.
He is also the creative force and front-man of Asaf Avidan & the Mojos, an Israeli folk rock band that he established in 2006 in Jerusalem.
The band released three albums, The Reckoning in 2008, Poor Boy / Lucky Man in 2009 and Through the Gale in 2010.Asaf Avidan also had an international hit with "One Day / Reckoning Song (Wankelmut Rmx)".Starting in 2012, the Mojos band project was shelved so that Avidan would concentrate on a solo career.
In 2012, he released Avidan in a Box, an acoustic live album which covers older songs by him, digital copies only.
He also launched his solo studio album Different Pulses in Israel, to be made available internationally in 2013.Biography and early careerAvidan was born in Jerusalem in 1980.
His parents were diplomats for the Israeli Foreign Office, and he spent four years of his childhood in Jamaica.After the mandatory army service in Israel, Avidan studied animation at Jerusalem’s Bezalel Academy of Arts & Design.
His final project short film, “Find Love Now”, won its category at the Haifa Film Festival that year.After his studies, Avidan moved to Tel Aviv and worked as an animator, until a breakup with his long-time girlfriend shook his world and made him move back to Jerusalem, quit his job and turn full-time to his up-till-then hobby – music.
Six songs about that breakup and subsequent heartache would constitute his debut EP, Now That You're Leaving, which was released independently in 2006 to critical acclaim.Asaf Avidan & the MojosIn late 2006, while playing solo acoustic tour across Israel, Avidan put together a support cast of musicians who would become the Mojos (Ran Nir – bass, Yoni Sheleg – drums, Roi Peled – guitar, Hadas Kleinman – cello).
The group became very famous in Israel, playing extensively there, and even got out to a tour in New York City in 2007.
Here, they also took part to MEANY Fest, advancing to the finals.The band has released three albums: The Reckoning in 2008, Poor Boy / Lucky Man in 2009 and Through the Gale in 2010.The Reckoning (2008)In 2007, Asaf Avidan & the Mojos went into the recording studio together for the first time, and recorded The Reckoning.
The album’s 15 tracks blended rock, folk and blues with Avidan’s lyrics about relationships and betrayal.By now the band had accumulated a huge live following in Israel and most record labels expressed interest.
But Avidan decided to continue on the independent path, and founded (with his brother and manager, Roie Avidan) Telmavar Records, on which The Reckoning was released in March 2008.It reached gold status in a year, platinum later, and would become the biggest selling independent record of all time in Israel.
It was chosen as Album of the Year (2008) by various media, including Time Out Tel Aviv."Weak", the second single of the album, became a huge radio hit and its video was Video of the Year on Israel’s music channel.
"Weak" would also be the title song of the film "L'Arbre" (English title The Tree) by Julie Bertuccelli, which starred Charlotte Gainsbourg and was the closing film at Cannes Film Festival 2010.While several European labels put offers on the table, the band opted to embark on a self-funded summer tour in 2009, playing dozens of festivals and venues across Europe.
By the end of that summer, Telmavar Records signed a licensing deal with Sony-Columbia in Europe, for "The Reckoning" and for the band's future second LP.The Reckoning was released in parts of Europe in 2009, to generally good reviews.In 2012 the "Reckoning Song" of the album became popular in Germany by a remix of DJ Wankelmut.
It was available on Soundcloud for months before it was released as a proper digital release named "One Day / Reckoning Song (Wankelmut Rmx)".
The track charted on sales charts in June 2012 and reached number 1 in August.Poor Boy / Lucky Man (2009)Poor Boy / Lucky Man, the band's second album, was released in Israel on 9/9/09.
The album's title song and main theme would revolve around a boy born with a hole instead of a heart.
The album was originally released in two different names and covers, leaving it up to the audience to decide whether this figure was poor or lucky.
It would reach gold status in Israel in 5 months, and garner ecstatic reviews.
It was released in parts of Europe in April 2011.
Among others, it was album of the month on France's national FIP radio, in the newspaper Libération, and in Germany's Eclipsed magazine.The band continued to tour non-stop from 2009 all through 2011 (mostly in Israel and Europe but also in the US, Canada, China and India), building up a devoted following and a reputation for a legendary live show.
Amongst the hundreds of shows, they played at Brandenburg Gate at The World Championship of Athletics in Berlin; at the closing event at Cannes Film Festival 2010; at China's biggest May 1 festivals; and at a tribute concert for The Who in Carnegie Hall, New York.
They would play dozens of festivals across Europe (including Solidays France, Latitude UK, Paleo Switzerland, Frequency Austria, and Haldern Pop Germany) as well as countless radio and TV shows (including Taratata and One Shot Not in France, and two Rockpalast performances in Germany).Through the Gale (2010)On November 30, 2010 the band released their 3rd album in Israel, "Through the Gale", a concept album telling the tale of the voyage of a blind and stubborn captain and his loyal crew in search of immortality, to the realms of the gods themselves, only to understand at the end that a voyage with no home, that a life without death, is meaningless.
One Day / Reckoning Song
Love It Or Leave It
Little Parcels Of An Endless Time
Over My Head