During pandemic isolation, there were few distractions as cathartic for me as producing ‘covideos,’ or Covid video projects. The first was my Rosh Hashana Video for Young Families. Sales for the video did not fund a similar project for Yom Kippur, so I decided to produce the highlight of the video, the Jonah And The Whale Rap, now on YouTube.
The biblical story of Jonah And The Whale has valuable life message about running from responsibility, sleeping through a personal storm and asking forgiveness with sincerity. What better way to teach a story than in a rap! My son Jeremy, the photographer who went viral during Covid, offered sound advice: ‘Mom, if you wanna put this Jonah And The Whale Rap into the world, cut it shorter and speak the lyrics instead of timing each word exactly to the beat.’
I made every attempt to avoid landing words squarely on the beat. You think it’s easy for someone who doesn’t listen to a lot of rap? I needed more help to upgrade my ‘cool’ factor. Another @jermcohen suggestion: “Mom, start listening to XL Shade 45 on Sirius XM.’ FYI, XL means uncensored and I don’t mind hearing those words every once in a while, but I will change the station if I hear it in every sentence. I listened to this station with a students ear, and tried to mimic the rappers techniques with the Jonah lyrics. Easier said than done – pun intended!
The music video ‘Jonah And The Whale Rap’ was videotaped by Jeremy Cohen and edited by Sophie Niesenbaum. The music is original and created by my long time friend and ‘clean rapper and musician, Gallo Locknez, who wrote the original track for my Oral Cancer Save-A-Life Rap, which has almost 12K views on my YouTube channel. Not too shabby when you consider the topic.
Feel free to share the lyrics to Jonah And The Whale Rap with your church, religious school, children…or for yourself! I’d love to know how you put the rap to use!