Tami Machnai

Tami Machnai


Tami's original compositions and unique interpretations of traditional Middle Eastern and Jewish folk music are emotional and intense. Inspirational and heart- wrenching melodies, extraordinary passion and haunting voice comparable to Lisa Gerrard take you on a Thousand and One Night trip. Timeless!


"Tami Machnai is a performer of extraordinary creativity, vocal talent and passion, a consummate artist of great emotional depth. Her work has a special spark that always moves her audience in ways they don't expect."
--Hankus Netsky Founder and Director, Klezmer Conservatory Band.

"I admire her depth and magnetism and the rich mix of her Western and Middle Eastern repertoire"
--Osvaldo Golijov, Composer

Singer/composer/pianist Tami Machnai's artistry evokes a unique and intimate cross over style. Built on a strong classical foundation, Machnai's musical journey includes powerful elements of mystery, storytelling and theater. Machnai's music defies traditional definition. Her fierce independence and refusal to settle, driven by her passion for simply great music creates a very personal style of her own.

Able to move comfortably between very different, sometimes extreme, musical languages, Machnai organically weaves sound colors into rich personal interpretations. Drawn to the peculiar, non-conventional (modal) harmonies with influences from classical and contemporary composers-- through Sephardic and Middle Eastern historic and sacred sounds-- to British Folk and orchestral progressive rock from the 70's (Pink Floyd, Queen, Kate Bush, Led Zeppelin) and contemporary lyrical songwriters ( Rufus Wainwright, Jeff Buckley, Fiona Apple) -- Machnai composes and performs music seeking depth, echoing emotions and startling with elements of surprise. She leads and directs a flexible ensemble in which you will find piano, guitars, violin, cello, clarinet/flute, accordion, bass, drums and hand percussion.

Recent credits include performing at Lincoln Center, NY in Peter Sellars' production of the opera 'Ainadamar' by Osvaldo Golijov, performing in Israel at Eynav-Center, the Zappa Jazz Club and on national TV, performance at The Fleet Center, Boston, at the opening ceremony of the International JCC Maccabi Games, for an audience of fifteen thousand; performing with the L.A. Philharmonic at the new Disney Hall in a production of Osvaldo Golijov 's opera 'Ainadamar'; two performances in Auckland and Wellington, New Zealand; a Performance at the Argentinean Jewish Relief Campaign of Greater Boston concert (AJRC) for an audience of nine hundred; and performing at the Boston 'First Night' celebrations on New Years eve 2004. Machnai was also joining creative forces recently with producer Stephen Webber (Aaron Neville, Meshell Ndegeocello, Lindsey Mac) to produce her new CD, prelude to a future album. As a song writer she has received prestigious awards. Two of her songs each won first prize in the BILLBOARD International Song Competition, World Music category: 'Yo M'enamori' won 2004 and 'Summertime Debka' won in 2007.

In 2005 Ms. Machnai celebrated the release of her CD 'Levante' in Boston and New York. The shows received superb responses from the audience, as well as from representatives of the music industry and media. In the Boston area Tami has performed at a wide range of venues including Ryles Jazz Club, Karoun Restaurant, where she also leads and produces a popular monthly Israeli music evening, the Boston Public Library, the Berklee Performance Center, Longi School of Music and the French Library, as well as numerous Jewish temples. She was also featured on the Boston NBC affiliate, WHDH Channel Seven News in a broadcast of the 2004 First Night celebration.

Outside the U.S., Ms. Machnai has performed in Wellington and Auckland, New Zealand, in Temple Sinay and Liston Park Festival; in Tokyo, Japan, at Club Kokatoo; in Caracas, Venezuela, at the Yohan Sebastian Bar and La Casa De Cultura; and in World Music Performance workshops at colleges and community music schools in Zurich, Switzerland, and in Marakai, Venezuela.

In her native Israel, Ms. Machnai has performed several times on Israeli national television and has performed in Tel Aviv at the Jazz O'mania Music Festival and the Suzanne Dalal Dance Festival. She has recorded a SONY Television commercial as soloist of the Arnon Palti Jazz Quartet, worked in collaboration with the Nimrod Frid Dance Ensemble, and has recorded with Boston Reggae singer/songwriter Casper John on four of his albums.

Ms. Machnai's music draws on her rich cultural and educational background. She began her studies as a classical pianist at the Dunia Weitzman Conservatory in Haifa, Israel, and continued at the Rimon School of Music in Tel-Aviv, Israel. Tami Machnai holds a Master's degree in Contemporary Improvisation from the New England Conservatory
(with academic honors), a Bachelor's degree in Vocal Performance from Berklee College of Music (Summa Cum Laude), and a Graduation Certificate from the Rimon School Of Jazz and Contemporary Music in Israel.


Yo M'enamori

Written By: Music- Tami Machnai/Lyrics- Anonymous( Public Domain)

(* The song is sang in Ladino which is the Jewish dialect of Spanish)

Yo m’enamori d’un aire
Yo m’enamori d’un aire
D’un aire d’una mujer
Una mujer mui hermoza
Linda de mi coraçon

Ahh…linda de mi coraçon

Yo m’namori de noche,
Yo m’enamori de noche,
El lunar Ya m’egaño.
Si esto era de dia
Yo no atava l’amor

Ahh.. Yo no atava l’amor


I fell in love with the charms,
I fell in love with the charms of a woman,
A very beautiful woman,
The beauty of my heart.

Ah- the beauty of my heart

I fell in love at night,
I fell in love at night- the moonlight deceived me
If it had been daylight
Love would not have caught me

Ah.. love would not have caught me

Come Into My Life

Written By: Tami Machnai

Come into my life
Every bit of my body is waiting, for you
Anticipating the other half
Step in the doorway
I know that you know where the keys are
I already told you all of my stories
And I even made you laugh

Come into my life
Come into my life
Come into my life

And I dream that you told me
I terribly miss you my love
And I want to come back to where my true home is
Believe in us princess cause we�re all that we have

Come into my life
Come into my life
Come into my life
Now, now, now

Every ending is looking for its true owner
I've lost you in mysterious ways
My happy ending is looking for its rightful owner
And I'll find you in some magical way
Cause I know that you're there..

Summertime Debka ( Hebrew:'Arugot Habosem' )

Written By: Tami Machnai


Let’s go down to the fragrant flowerbeds
Where cinnamon, frankincense and myhrr are spreading
and in my hair sweet jasmine blooms
In confident arms you will take me
And hold me close to your heart
My love, let’s go dancing

Tonight we’ll dance out all our joy
Share with god what’s in our hearts
Just give me your hand
Your voice is pleasant to my ears
Pleasant to me is your sight
To the question in your eyes I will reply
My love, to you I'll be a bride

From the springs of salvation you arrived
How much I loved your peace when you came
With beads round your neck
All the kindness in your heart you offered
And loved me simply,
You knew
I am yours, you are mine

Tonight we’ll dance out all our joy
Share with god what’s in our hearts
Just give me your hand
Your voice is pleasant to my ears
Pleasant to me is your sight
A thread of silk has woven my life into yours
My love, to you I'll be a bride


Song Collection 2006
( Co produced with Stephen Webber)


The Tami machnai Ensemble-2001 ( Demo)

Personal Angles-1998 ( Demo)

Set List

A set is usually 45 to 75 minutes long. The ensemble typically offers one or two sets per concert.
The program includes a mix of Machnai's originals: new and contemporary compositions such as 'Summer time Debka' and 'Come Into My life', combined with traditionally sounding songs like Tami's 'Yo Menamori' (based on the text of the renowned Sephardic popular song and the first place winner in the 2004 Billboard Song contest), 'Vuelo Sin Final', 'Mystery to me' and others, as well as selected songs from her native Israel- all in new,unique and personal interpretations like 'Gate of Mercy'.