It’s that time again!
The period between Passover and Shavuot has a unique commandment attached mandating Jews to count each of the 49 days between the two holidays, a ritual known as counting the Omer. It’s also a weird, strange time, full of any number of semi-mourning practices (dependent on regional or familial custom) forbidding any combination of haircuts, shaving, listening to instrumental music, or conducting weddings, parties, and dinners with dancing.
The traditional reason cited in the Talmud is that this is in memory of a plague that killed the 24,000 students of Rabbi Akiva as a sign of Divine anger during the days of the Omer-counting for not honoring one another properly as befits Torah scholars. All such restrictions are lifted on the 33rd day of counting, also known as Lag B’Omer.
But in the meantime, for those of us who follow the restrictions of not listening to live or instrumental music, the Omer marks the beginning of a grueling five week period of enduring just gosh-awful Jewish acapella groups just to get a musical fix.
Not everyone can be the Maccabeats.
And so, as a public service, here are three not terrible acapella acts to help pass your Omer time.
1. Smooth McGroove
You may (MUST!) be a geek to truly appreciate this channel. But if you are, oh Moses’ beard are you in for a treat.
If you’re looking for contemporary Top 40 stylings, these are your go to guys. You will believe that acapella groups can not suck. Cray. Mazing.
3. Straight No Chaser
Luckily, drinking is still a legit thing to do during Omer. So knock one back with these guys.
Do you have a favorite (and actually good) acapella group you listen to during Omer? List them in the comments below!