Biography

Matisyahu is a charismatic reggae/hip-hop music performer who is easy to recognize among the other singers by his unforgettable stage image. During his live shows, this musician is looking like a regular old-fashioned Jew with a big untrimmed beard and all clad black. He performs rap praising Judaism to the music mostly similar to Jamaican reggae beats, which makes his concerts hardly comparable to any other performances. When Matisyahu was making his first steps down the music path, there were not many people who would take this seriously, unless time proved this young man’s talent and grounded ambitions. Nowadays, his records are real bestsellers and his concerts are always sold out.

Matisyahu was born Mathew Miller on June 30, 1979 in West Chester, a small town in Pennsylvania. When he was an infant, his family relocated to California for a short while and then, again, moved to the Eastern Coast to settle down in New York. Mathew was raised in full accordance with strict traditional Jewish rules, which he first opposed. As a teenager, Miller grew fond of hippie movement that ignited a long-term conflict between him and his parents. However, aged fourteen, this man made a trip to Colorado where he accepted Judaism and soon afterwards visited Israel. Back to America, Mathew left his high school and started travelling across the country sometimes attending the concerts by Phish. When his travelling was over, the young man’s parents sent him to Oregon where he began studying arts. It was that very place where Matthew went into hip-hop and reggae music seriously and started participating in various talent contests. Miller came back to New York when he was nineteen and entered the School of Social Research in Manhattan. Around the same time, he became a regular visitor of a synagogue and took up the Matisyahu name.

Music remained the main priority to Matisyahu as he soon realized he had to find himself a backing group of instrumentalists. He finally recruited guitarist Aaron Dugan, bassist Josh Werner and drummer Jonah David. In 2004, the band singed up a contract with the sound recording company JDub Records and released their debut long player under the title Shake Off the Dust... Arise. To promote this undoubtedly powerful record, the musicians arranged a tour for several states. One of such shows held in Texas was later issued as a live album called Live at Stubb's (2005). Soon, this CD was re-released in a larger amount by Epic Records. Matisyahu continued touring the country with his concerts and preparing the material for the second studio album during the intervals. Entitled Youth, it arrived in the spring of 2006. This work received a Grammy nomination in the category Best Reggae Album. At the same time, a special version of this long-play was produced for those willing to order it by mail. The band of musicians supporting the singer during his live shows and recording sessions named themselves Roots Tonic and first issued an album called Roots Tonic Meets Bill Laswell and then, by the end of the same year, a EP/DVD called No Place to Be (2006). Among the songs featured on the CD, one could find a cover of Police’s Message in a Bottle and a number of remixes. The DVD part contained interviews and live performances made by the group in Israel. In the mid 2009, Matisyahu delivered another studio work. The new album was named Light.

Studio Albums

Matisyahu, Undercurrent mp3Undercurrent
2017
  • Reggae
  • Indie Rock
  • Jazz Rap
Matisyahu, Akeda mp3Akeda
2014
  • Dub
  • Pop Reggae
  • Indie Pop
Matisyahu, Spark Seeker mp3Spark Seeker
2012
  • Indie Electronic
  • Jewish Music
  • Pop Reggae
Matisyahu, Light mp3Light
2009
  • Jewish Hip Hop
  • Reggae
Matisyahu, Youth mp3Youth
On Youth Matisyahu continues to bring his uncanny, electrifying fusion of orthodox Judaism and classic reggae music to us with unbelievable energy. Youth is a huge step forward for Matisyahu and clearly shows his growth and enormous potential
2006
  • Jewish Hip Hop
  • Rap Rock
  • Reggae
Matisyahu, Shake Off the Dust...Arise mp3Shake Off the Dust...Arise
2004
  • Dub
  • Jewish Hip Hop
  • Reggae

Singles

Matisyahu, Miracle mp3Miracle
2011
  • Reggae

EP

Matisyahu, No Place to Be mp3No Place to Be
2006
  • Jewish Hip Hop
  • Rap Rock
  • Reggae

Lives

Matisyahu, Live at Stubb's, Volume II mp3Live at Stubb's, Volume II
2011
  • Dub
  • Pop Reggae
  • Reggae
Matisyahu, Live at Stubb's mp3Live at Stubb's
2005
  • Jewish Hip Hop
  • Rap Rock
  • Reggae