Johnny Mayer, Blues Musician

Ofra Haza, Israel

Ofra Haza

I met Ofra Haza when I lived in her neighborhood years ago in the Ha Tikva quarter of Tel Aviv... Ofra Haza, a Yemenite singer from a poor neighborhood of Tel Aviv that passed away on February 23, 2000. My Blues for Peace Song is dedicated to Ofra Haza would stop by almost every night to my house for nightly blues jams at my apartment. After a few weeks, she introduced me to Bezalel Aloni, her manager.

At the time, Ofra Haza and Betzalel Aloni were beginning to create a new sound based on western dance beats and Arab melodies that would make Ofra Haza world famous. Bezalel liked my music and suggested I write a blues song for Ofra Haza based on a biblical text. I started to make up a melody for the song, but never quite finished it.

When Ofra passed away, I dug out the song and called Betzalel to express my condolences and talk about old times. After I got off the phone, I picked up my guitar and came up with "The Blues for Peace Song" and dedicated it to Ofra Haza.

Listen to the Blues for Peace Song.

By Johnny Mayer.

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