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Matisyahu ditches the beard, promises a year of rebirth

December 14, 2011 | 11:16 am


Matisyahu is promising some musical changes in 2012 and to prove it, the Hasidic Jewish reggae artist has shaved.

Once known for his long beard (and his musical talent, of course), Matisyahu tweeted a picture of his clean-shorn mug to fans on Tuesday along with the phrase, "At the break of day I look for you at sunrise When the tide comes in I lose my disguise."

He explained in a related blog post on his website, "No more Chassidic reggae superstar. Sorry folks, all you get is me…no alias."

He goes on to talk about his religious journey, his need to submit himself to the strict rules in order to become a good person, and finally his need to reclaim his own identity. Hence, the clean face.

He concludes, "Get ready for an amazing year filled with music of rebirth.  And for those concerned with my naked face, don’t worry... you haven’t seen the last of my facial hair."

Matisyahu in 2012: handlebar mustaches and zydeco?

Actually, the rapper has two albums in the works. Earlier this year, he talked to Billboard about "Akedah: Teaching to Love," an album recorded with his current touring band, Dub Trio, and based on the biblical story of Abraham preparing his son Isaac for sacrifice to God. He also has another album that he says is a more hip-hop-oriented set, which he told the magazine would be more Top 40 than alternative.

And to clarify that he's not turning his back on the Jewish faith, he followed up with the tweet: "For all of those who are being awesome, you are awesome. For all those who are confused: today I went to the Mikva and Shul just like yesterday."


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-- Patrick Day

Photo: Matisyahu (real name Matthew Paul Miller) tweeted his clean-shaven face to the shock and surprise of fans. Credit: Twitter.