Ben Adam

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Israel "Ben Adam"
Eurovision Song Contest 1988 entry
Country Israel
Artist(s) Yardena Feinbaum-Arazi
As Yardena Arazi
Language Hebrew
Composer(s) Boris Dimitstein
Lyricist(s) Ehud Manor
Conductor Eldad Shrem
Finals performance
Final result 7th
Final points 85
Appearance chronology
◄ "Shir Habatlanim" (1987)   
"Derekh Hamelekh" (1989) ►

"Ben Adam" (Hebrew: בן אדם‎, English translation: "Human Being", literally "Son of Adam") was the Israeli entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1988, performed in Hebrew by Yardena Arazi. "Ben Adam", beyond its literal meaning is used in Hebrew to describe a righteous person, someone who does the right thing. In Yiddish that would be "A Mench", when they say in Hebrew: "c'mon, be a Ben Adam" - that would mean "Do the right thing". to be: "not a Ben Adam" means that a person behaves in an anti-social manner. "Ben Adam" also means: an ordinary normal person. Male only.

The song deals with the ordinariness of humanity, as Arazi sings that "no man is perfect in all virtues" and tells her listeners "don't always judge him for the worse". With this in mind, she exhorts her listeners to "let him dream and give him breath", that is, to treat everyone with dignity. Musically, the song is perhaps best known for its final chorus. Beginning at a slow tempo, the song builds to a fast-paced conclusion.

The song was performed eighth on the night (following the Netherlands' Gerard Joling with "Shangri-La" and preceding Switzerland's entry and winning song "Ne Partez Pas Sans Moi", sung by Celine Dion). At the close of voting, it had received 85 points, placing 7th in a field of 21.

It was succeeded as Israeli representative at the 1989 Contest by Gili & Galit with Derekh Hamelekh.

In 2010, the Israeli artist Yoni Eilat recorded a Yiddish cover of the song, "Der Mentsch", for his album "Tzigayner Neshume".


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