Matisyahu Gets Intimate on 'Spark Seeker: Acoustic Sessions' – Album Premiere

Reggae singer wanted to reveal more personal layers of himself

Mark Squires
January 28, 2013 9:00 AM ET

After Matisyahu lost his signature beard late in 2011, he found himself in a new place spiritually. The world's first Hasidic reggae star had rid himself of his most visibly recognizable trait, but the sense of freedom that accompanied it was liberating, fueling last summer's Spark Seeker. "No one recognizes me, so I can kind of be incognito . . . and just chill with people," he told Rolling Stone last August.

Photos: Rock Stars Bearded to Baby-Faced – Matisyahu

Though Spark Seeker was inspired by Matisyahu's reinvigoration and reinvention, the singer wanted to peel back and expose even deeper, more personal layers of himself, so he decided to explore songs from the album acoustically. "It allows me to express a deep level of intimacy that I feel connects with my fans," Matisyahu tells Rolling Stone of his new acoustic EP. " I love playing the songs stripped back . . . it gives the subtleties of the song and voice the ability to come to light."

Spark Seeker: Acoustic Sessions is out January 29th. Matisyahu is also on a short acoustic tour that wraps up February 19th in Annapolis, Maryland. For full tour dates, visit Matisyahu's website.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

New and Hot Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

More Song Stories entries »