Never heard of Lipa Schmeltzer? Then you must not be haredi Orthodox (but I guess you don’t need me to tell you that).
This 34-year-old Skverer Chasid from upstate New York is a superstar in the haredi music world — dubbed by some as the Jewish Elvis. Except he doesn’t sing about girls.
Last year, he penned a song honoring Leiby Kletzy after the 8-year-old Chasidic boy was found murdered and dismembered in a gruesome abduction while walking home from summer camp in his neighborhood of Borough Park, Brooklyn.
On Sunday, Schmeltzer posted the latest video from his new album, “Leap of Faith,” with a song called “Hang Up the Phone.” The lyrics include such gems as “All the hocus-pocus / forever tries to choke us / It’s making such a ruckus / we can barely focus / Davening and driving / eating work and sleepin’ / Why keep on replying / to all the rings and beepin’?”
No doubt the haredi leaders who railed against unfettered internet use at last month’s rally at New York’s Citi Field would applaud this line: “Instead of searching Google / I’m busy making kugel…”
In less than 24 hours, the video has garnered more than 16,000 views. That’s impressive by any measure.
So far, Schmeltzer, who’s pop-techno style has been criticized by some haredim as too modern, hasn’t had much crossover appeal — as opposed to, say, Matisyahu. But then again, Matisyahu’s not really a Chasid anymore.
Watch the video here: