Erez Halevy

Matti Caspi arranged, produced, and played all instruments in Erez Halevy’s album"The Night" (1984)." (1984).
Erez Halevy told that Caspi is responsible for his special high-pitched voice in the record.

Halevy’s first encounter with Caspi was when Caspi had a club in Tel Aviv and was auditioning musicians to perform there. Halevy reached the first place in the auditions whereas Meir Bannai reached the second. Erez Halevy tells:

“Caspi said to me: ‘I’m giving you first place because you have no one to help you. Second place will be given to Meir Bannai because he comes from a family where there are many who could help him’. I took 2000 liras (old Israeli currency), 1000 went for rent, and the rest I spent in a pub. There was an item in the newspapers that said ‘Matti Caspi chose Erez Halevy’. I asked my girlfriend ‘What do we do with this? It’s Matti Caspi, this is serious stuff’. I called him and asked if he would be willing to produce me a song or two. He said ‘Yes Halevy, with pleasure’. We recorded three songs and then the Lebanon war broke, and I got stuck with those three songs. A year later we continued and the album was released but was never broadcasted. For half a year it was ignored, even though Caspi was part of its production and all. Until one day Galatz discovered it and slowly all radio stations were filled with it. It started playing everywhere, I went out to perform some shows, a lot in Jerusalem, a little in Tel Aviv, but there wasn’t any production company interested, nothing concrete. This is one of my biggest failures. I was very frightened. A guy like me who comes from the hood and suddenly is put under the spotlight, it was petrifying. I was petrified not only during the recording period, but also for a year after. I didn’t know how to take it like Robas or Bannai did.
I wrote “The Fishermen” in three chords. Caspi made some amazing movements there. Things I could never think of. I’m not a musical producer. Also in “Thus He Created” there were entire movements that came from Caspi. He touched those tiny songs and knew exactly what he was doing and where he was going. When I’ve sat with him in the studio I would become mute”.

From an article by Ben Shalev, October 15th 2008:
Halevy was discovered in the early 80’s when he participated in a young talent competition conducted by Matti Caspi at his club back then, “Sky”. “It was a sort of ‘A Star is Born’ only quieter” says Halevy, who sang “The Fishermen” and “The Night” at the competition. “Meir Bannai arrived from Beer Sheva and won first place. I won second. But Matti Caspi told Bannai ‘You have someone who’ll help you, but Halevy has no one, so he will receive the money’. It was a nice sum, 2700 liras. 700 went for rent, and the rest I spent at a bar that night”.
Halevy asked Caspi to produce him an album and Caspi, who was at the pinnacle of his career as a producer, agreed. “To me he was god, the greatest. I came from nowhere, and admired him totally” says Halevy. Caspi decided to play all the instruments by himself. “I’ve asked him several times why he did that and his answer was almost unclear” says Halevy. “He said: ‘these materials demand specific treatment and playing”.
Caspi took Halevy’s simple compositions, injected them with cradling rhythm and added some volume through the complicated harmonic movements that define him so much. “When I first heard the guitar movement he added to “The Fishermen” my knees were shaking” says Halevy, “It was pure brilliance”. Still, he adds, Caspi wasn’t sure of what he’s done. He tells that one day Arik Einstein came to the studio and Caspi played him the songs to hear his opinion. “I sat in the corner, and when the songs finished playing, Einstein said to me: ‘you are a not so little bastard’, he tells with pride.

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