Matisyahu Unplugged: "I Feel Like the Other Sides of My Personality Come Out In These Shows"
Do these acoustic sets bring out any traits in yourself as a performer that you haven't seen before?
There's much more of a focus on the subtleties of the voice. With the rock show--the electric show, or whatever--there's a lot of sound, there's a lot of noise, and I'm dancing. With the acoustic show, there's really nothing to hide behind. It's just me, sitting on the stool, and my voice. I can really get into the delivery and the way I'm singing it, the colors and the emotions that I'm using, and know that people are hearing it. They're not missing it, you know? It's connecting with them. We're going to do a short Q and A thing [on the acoustic tour]. With all of the changes and stuff that I've been through, people have a lot of questions. I get the opportunity to talk to people as well and tell them a little bit about myself, and I get to joke around with a lot of people. People have a certain perception of who I am and I'm not always that. I feel like the other sides of my personality come out in these shows. With the rock show, I just kind of go out and do what I do. With these shows I'm bringing people into my life and into my musical and emotional life, and people get a sense of who I am as a person.
What's the one thing you hope people take away from the acoustic tour?
The biggest challenge is people knowing what they're going to see, that they're going to see not just a Matisyahu concert but an acoustic concert. Sometimes people come to these shows expecting to dance at a high-energy rock show, but it's not that. The challenge is trying to get people to meet me dynamically on the energy level I give. I hope that people connect with the music in an emotional way. I hope that when people walk away, they walk away feeling as I would feel when I was leaving a concert when I was a kid, feeling touched, feeling connected. It's like when you go to a good movie and it gives you that insight into your own life: you have that supercharged clarity in your life. Good art, that's the purpose of it--to lift you up and take you to a new realm, and allow you to see things about your life and help you make decisions that might need to be made.