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I still vividly remember the first time I heard his music.  It was at a Greater Chicago Jewish Folk Arts Festival.  I don’t remember the year, but I do remember standing only 20 feet away as I heard the most amazing music originate from a single person sitting on the stage.  Had I not been standing right there I would have sworn there was a drummer onstage as well.  David Broza manages to create layers of sound with his voice, his hands, his guitar.  The effect is nothing short of spectacular. 

I’m not the musician in the family.  That distinction belongs to my son Shawn. Sadly, he was not with me that day, but when I brought home Broza’s Masada Live CD, Shawn fell in love with his music just as I expected. He would play the CD over and over again, following along with his guitar and harmonizing with the songs.

Over the years, I was able to attend many Broza concerts in Chicago, but for one reason or another Shawn was never able to be there with me.  Finally, in 2011, Shawn saw Broza perform live for the first time at the URJ Biennial in Washington DC. By this time he knew the music well but had still never seen him perform live.  I’m not sure which I enjoyed more, watching Broza perform or watching Shawn watch Broza perform.

I was thrilled when we decided to bring David Broza to Oak Park Temple.  And I was so beyond thrilled when we were able to arrange for Shawn to meet him this past spring. Broza was in Chicago to play for a pre-Passover Seder at City Winery.  He had a 5:00 sound check at the Winery so he arranged to meet us at 4:00.  I asked if Shawn could bring his guitar along and he replied “Sure 🙂 Great. Looking forward.

David Broza was soft-spoken, warm and charming, He and Shawn chatted about guitars for awhile and then he said “Let’ go into one of the dressing rooms and play a little.”  Shawn started out by performing a few of his own songs.  Then the two of them played a few of Shawn’s favorite David Broza songs, Shawn singing harmonies just as he had along with the CDs all those years ago.  

I sat in the corner saying as little as possible, pointing my iPhone video camera at the two of them in hopes of capturing the magic that was unfolding before me.  And I succeeded -see below for the videos from that incredible afternoon.  

Around 5:00 I said we should probably go and Broza said “Don’t worry, they’ll come get me when they need me; we’re just getting to know each other musically.” 

Not only is Broza an wonderful musician, I now know that he is an incredibly kind and caring man.  Oak ParkTemple is so lucky to have him perform here on November 1 as part of our Sesquicentennial Celebration.  It’s an event you should not miss -  purchase tickets at 150.oakparktemple.com/david-broza.html.  I hope to see you there. 


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