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Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Bob Dylan's 70th Birthday on Radio Free Nachlaot has already begun! We've been playing Dylan music, Dylan covers, all things Dylan since "The Birthday" started here in Jerusalem at midnight.

This afternoon at 3pm Jerusalem time we'll be joined live in our broadcast booth by Rabbi Chaim Richman, who happens to be (amongst other things) arguably (go ahead and argue with us if you like!) the Middle East's foremost Dylan expert. We'll be celebrating All Things Dylan today on Radio Free Nachlaot ... in the way that only we can!

We've noticed that a lot of our musical friends have turned 70 lately ... Jorma, Phil Lesh, etc. and now Dylan. What's this 70 thing all about?

We noted that the Hebrew word for "Watchtower" NunYodChetBet has the Gematria (Jewish Numerology) of 70. Bob Dylan wrote "All Along the Watchtower." Is there a connection?

We know there are 70 Nations (Genesis 10).  We know that Jacob came into Egypt with 70 souls (Genesis 46). We also know there were 70 Elders (Exodus 24:1; Numbers 11:16) advising Moses, who became the Sanhedrin. We know that the Jewish People were in exile "by the waters of Babylon," weeping and remembering Zion for 70 years before they were able to come back to Eretz Yisrael. We know that the Second Temple fell to the Romans in the year 70CE. Most mysteriously, we know from the Prophet Daniel that "70 Sevens have been decreed upon your people and upon your holy city to terminate transgression, to end sin, to wipe away iniquity, to bring everlasting righteousness, to confirm the visions and the prophets, and to anoitn the Holy of Holies." (Daniel 9:24).

More than ever, 70 is a resonating number and bob Dylan's 70th Birthday as celebrated in Jerusalem will be commemorated in style. As everybody knows, Radio Free Nachlaot is famous for being "Where Shlomo Meets Jerry" .... today, it's "Where Shlomo Meets Bobby." Join us, won't you?