About Idan Raichel
Reflecting a blend of some of the diverse world music styles that comprise Israel's colorful musical landscape, Idan Raichel's songs are as catchy and accessible as they are thoughtful and richly multicultural. With a particular affection for Ethiopian folk music, he incorporates not only varied regional influences into his pop music but multiple languages. His ambitious first album, The Idan Raichel Project, saw release in 2002, with a worldwide debut of the same title following in 2006. Raichel's first album without the Project, 2016's At the Edge of the Beginning, was a much sparer, more intimate outing. Both incarnations reached the Top Ten of the Billboard World Albums chart.
Idan Raichel toured and performed for Israeli troops across the country as a member of the army rock band before forging his own eclectic approach to music. It was while working at a boarding school for immigrant children that he was inspired to embrace varied cultural heritages through music. In the meantime, he was establishing himself as a sideman, working with some of Israel's most revered pop acts. With a growing pool of musician friends and knowledge of pop production, Raichel set about recording some of his songs. Over 70 musicians contributed to the demo that he used to seek out the backing he would require for a full-length production. Finding that support from Helicon Records, the Idan Raichel Project was born. The resulting 2002 self-titled debut created a buzz worldwide, and Raichel and his group kept a busy touring schedule that further expanded their audience. The group's second album, Out of Depths, followed in 2005, with Raichel continuing to give voice to disadvantaged groups (singer Cabra Casey, for example, was born in a refugee camp in Sudan). Also self-titled, the Idan Raichel Project's first worldwide release arrived on the Vermont-based Cumbancha label in 2006.
With another expansive list of performers, the project's second international release, 2009's Within My Walls, included collaborations with Cabo Verde-born vocalist Mayra Andrade, Colombian singer/songwriter Marta Gómez, and American singer/songwriter Somi, who is of Rwandan and Ugandan descent. It reached number four on the Billboard World Albums chart. Another Top Ten world album, 2013's Quarter to Six, featured musicians spanning Ana Moura, Andreas Scholl, and Vieux Farka Touré, Raichel's partner in the Touré-Raichel Collective.
In 2016, Raichel went solo with At the Edge of the Beginning, also released on Cumbancha. It peaked at number three on the Billboard world chart. The live solo piano album Piano-Songs followed a year later. Featuring guests such as Berry Sakharof and Danay Suarez, as well as the Idan Raichel Project (on one track), And if You Will Come to Me arrived on Cumbancha in 2019. ~ Marcy Donelson & Evan C. Gutierrez
HOMETOWNKfar Saba, Israel
BORNSeptember 12, 1977