Music is essential to the life of B’nai Adath and its members, to our identity and to our prayer. Like our Chasidic neighbors, who sing beautiful songs to praise The Most High, we also follow the instructions of Psalm 98 to:
Sing to the Lord a new song, for He performed wonders:
מִזְמ֡וֹר שִׁ֚ירוּ לַֽיהֹוָ֨ה | שִׁ֥יר חָדָ֗שׁ כִּֽי־נִפְלָא֥וֹת
So like our fellow members of Am Yisrael, we sing new songs to God according to our custom; which as people of African ancestry, centers around drums and drumming.
By praising God with our voices and drums, we fulfill Psalm 150:
Praise God with timbrel and dance; praise Him with lute and pipe.
הַֽ֭לְלוּהוּ בְתֹ֣ף וּמָח֑וֹל הַֽ֝לְל֗וּהוּ בְּמִנִּ֥ים וְעוּגָֽב׃
Praise Him with resounding cymbals; praise Him with
הַֽלְל֥וּהוּ בְצִלְצְלֵי־שָׁ֑מַע הַֽ֝לְל֗וּהוּ בְּֽצִלְצְלֵ֥י תְרוּעָֽה׃
Our music crosses all of our generations, with our adults and children singing and drumming together so that as the prayer says
From one generation to another we will declare God’s greatness, and forever sanctify God with words of holiness. Your praise, O God, shall never depart from our lips.
לְדוֹר וָדוֹר נַגִּיד גָּדְלֶֽךָ וּלְנֵֽצַח נְצָחִים קְדֻשָּׁתְךָ נַקְדִּישׁ, וְשִׁבְחֲךָ אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מִפִּֽינוּ ֹא יָמוּשׁ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד
Indeed, our children participate in our Hebrew school and music lessons from a very early age teaching our music to each other (and joyfully, playfully competing as to their individual skill).Our music has comforted us and kept us together during this most trying time as we rebuild from the fire.