If there is an emerging artist in 2021 to remind us that Jewish-Arabic relations are not monolithic, it is the Israeli singer/actress Liraz. She sings in Farsi and has a huge following in Iran, where her fans upload videos of themselves dancing to her music. In her new project Zan (meaning ‘women’ in Farsi), there is no doubt where her influences lie. The new award-winning album is a love letter to pre-Revolutionary Iran, to the incandescent singer Googoosh, and to the shimmering retro sounds of pre-Ayatollah Tehran. Her Israeli band secretly collaborated with Iranian musicians to produce the buoyant, border-busting tracks on the album.
Born in Ramla, Israel to Jewish-Persian emigres from Iran, she grew up speaking Farsi and hearing stories of an enchanted city called Tehran. Working as an actress in Hollywood in her 30s (alongside Sean Penn, Naomi Watts and Phillip Seymour Hoffman), she reconnected with Iranian culture through the vast Iranian diaspora living in LA and began collecting pre-Revolutionary Iranian music. Ten years later and working in collaboration with legendary underground surf/garage rock artist Uri Brauner (Boom Pam, Ouzo Bazooka), she is now a rising star of retro Persian soul & psychedelic electro-pop.
Liraz’s heart-warming story reminds us of how music can transcend nationalism, politics, and war. Join us in welcoming her to the Valley for her debut US performance.