The Shmooze

Hanukkah Videos Galore

By Renee Ghert-Zand

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We almost thought we weren’t going to have a selection of new Hanukkah videos to share with you this year. Particularly stressful was our waiting to see if the Maccabeats would come out with something. We waited and waited, and finally, they released their original “Shine” a mere two days before the first candle was to be lit. What a relief! We could never be ready to celebrate a Jewish holiday without a new Maccabeats video to go with it.

It seems like everything was very down to the wire this year. We’ll give everyone the benefit of the doubt and chalk it up to Hanukkah’s coming early in December, thus shortening the production period. But as we’re going to press, we’ve seen and heard nothing new from the Ein Prat Fountainheads. Very distressing.

So, let us recommend the following Hanukkah videos for your viewing pleasure…or displeasure, depending on what kind of holiday cheer you are looking for:

Here is that new video called “Shine” from the Maccabeats. It is an original composition and it theme is the promotion of the Bone Marrow Registry and the importance of being tested.

Michelle Citrin’s “Hanukkah Lovin’” is quickly emerging as a favorite this year. The singer wins you over in the first bars of this sweet and sultry jazz ballad about lighting some sparks during the holiday. Not to mention that she looks very fetching in her “Spinster Chanukah” sweater.

StandFour, a break-off group from The Maccabeats (these guys have graduated from Yeshiva U.), gives us “Eight Nights,” a parody mashup of “Some Nights” by Fun, “Die Young” by Ke$ha, “Live While We’re Young” by One Direction.

Six13, with a little help from their fans, bring us their frum pop version of “Haneirot Halalu.”

In the new “Bubala Please” videos, “two angry, misunderstood gangsters” named Luis and Jacquann show us—using extremely foul language— how to make latkes and decorate a Hanukkah bush. These videos are most definitely not to everyone’s taste, no matter how the latkes are made.

Matisyahu performs his new holiday song, simply titled “Happy Hanukkah” on the Tonight Show. All proceeds from the sale of the song (online only) will go to Hurricane Sandy relief.

Engineering fans will enjoy this video made by Technion students in Israel demonstrating the Rube Goldberg machine they made to light the menorah this year. For the real geeks among us, there is also the behind-the-scenes video.

The Pella Singers bring us this “8 Nights of Hanukkah” mashup that we think is about Jewish Americans showing solidarity with Israel. Actually, once we see in the end credits that it was produced by StandWithUs, then we are sure that is what it is about.

We get a tour of Jerusalem via rollerblades in this fast-paced new Hanukkah video from Aish.com.

If you like watching middle-aged guys pretending to be youthful hip-hop artists, then L.A.’s Ohr HaTorah’s “No Latkes” is for you. It seems that good latkes are a real deal breaker for these guys.

Let Rabbi Daniel Brenner sing to you about how he digs “A Minor Holiday” —Hanukkah—in a major way.

Rockazion shot their roots reggae version of the Hanukkah classic “Who Can Retell” against the backdrop of devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy in Long Beach, New York.

Y-Love offers a Hanukkah blessing of inclusion in this PSA he made—in Yiddish—for Keshet, the Jewish LGBT advocacy and education organization.

This has got to be the weirdest new Hanukkah video out there. It’s of actor Mark Feuerstein dressed in a silly cow costume rapping the Hebrew “Ve’ahavta” prayer for a Heifer International holiday fundraising campaign. At least, that’s what we think this trippy video is.

And what would Hanukkah 2012 be without a little Gangnam Style? Here’s a video showing an impressive Hanukkah-themed light display, set to the song none of us can get out of heads, put on by the Herman family of Los Angeles. Also, the 7th and 8th graders at Temple Beth Sholom in Santa Ana, California shine in that awkward yet cute middle school kind of way in their “Hanukkah Style” video.


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