Jacob Agar is a cantor at Beth Shalom Synagogue, in Pennsylvania. It’s a gorgeous building, and has the bonus claim to be the only synagogue to be designed by trailblazing architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. With its high ceilings that reach to the heavens, its perfect acoustics ensure that all voices are heard loud and clear – and voices such as Jacob’s certainly deserve to be heard. His new single, ‘Avinu Malkeinu’, is a song set on classical lines that is designed to be sung on High Holy Days. Also known by its English name, ‘Our Father Our King’, the beautiful song has been recorded by the likes of Barbra Streisand.
In Jacob Agur’s hands, ‘Avinu Malkeinu’ becomes an operatic masterpiece. His voice is one which is clearly suited to this style of music, and for which he has trained many years. Having said that, his talent is not limited to the operatic, and his clear connection to music is evident with every note.
Jacob Agar has felt that connection to music from a very young age, and in connnection with his Jewish faith decided to become a cantor – an official who sings liturgical music and leads prayer in a synagogue – at Beth Sholom Congregation. Jacob sees music as a means of healing for himself and those who listen.
‘Avinu Malkeinu’ is sung on the Ten Days of Repentance, which occur on the first 10 days of the Hebrew month Tishrei (usually sometime in September), beginning with the Jewish New Year Rosh Hashanah and ending with the conclusion of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. Each line of the song begins with the words, “Avinu Malkeinu”, and ends with a petition. It welcomes the new year, one which should be filled with forgiveness, new beginnings, and the desire to be a better person. Jacob Agar’s vocals are stunning, and work well with the gorgeous instrumentals, and the song should strike a chord with any music lover, no matter what faith. The music video which accompanies the track is equally beautiful, as it shines the focus on the words and music.