Yishai Levi

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Yishay Levi (Hebrew: ישי לוי‎‎; born January 20, 1963 in Rosh HaAyin, Israel) is an Israeli musician, one of the valued artists[citation needed] of Mizrahi music in Israel.


Levi was born into a family of Yemenite Jews. He began singing in clubs in Israel in 1983, when singers like Zohar Argov and Haim Moshe were at the peak of their careers. Here he was discovered by the guitarist Moses Ben-Mosh.[1]

Levi produced his first album, Hafla with Ben Mohes in 1986. He became a superstar in clubs all over Israel. After this he published his first song in the album Ine Ba Ha-yom (Here Comes the Day); then the song "Raiya" brought him fame. It was at this time that he and Zohar Argov began a personal rivalry. The album was published in 1987.[2]

Levi's career began to fade in 1988-1991 due to his drug habit. In 1992, he published the album Lehatchil M'bereshit (To Start from the Beginning) with the hits "Rikud" (one of the biggest hits in Mizrahi music) and "Mona". Later, Levi released the albums Ha-elam hamodot (Lovely Lad) in 1993, and Mabit m'atzed (Watch from the Side) in 1994, which were less successful, although the first album produced two hits, "Ha-elam hamodot" and "Mi Li Tomar".

In 1995 he published the album Bat almavat (immortal). The entire album was a collection of Boaz Sharabi covers, except for the title song. This album was not a success and Levi's popularity started to fade again. Then in 1997, he published the album Ha-emuna (The Belief), which again saved his career as a singer with the hit "Taltalim shorim".

In 1997, he published the album Zirat hayi (Live at the Arena), but this was not a commercial success. In 2000, he released the album Panim l'atid (Face to the Future).

At the end of 2000, Ishay Levi was sent to jail because he entered the apartment of his neighbor to steal electrical appliances so he could sell them to buy drugs. He was released from jail in 2003.

In 2004, Levi published the album Nativ yisorii (Route of my Suffering). After this album, Levi did a show dedicated to his wife called Ani shar lach Iris (I Sing for You, Iris). Levi returned to jail after setting his wife's house on fire, apparently because she was not giving him money for drugs. He was released from this jail sentence in 2006.[3]

New career boost[edit]

In 2008, Levi released the album Rikud romanti (Romantic Dance), which included the hits "Rikud romanti," "Roze Otach balayla" (I Want You at Night), "Isha namena" (Loyal Wife) and the Arabic hit "Ah ya albi" (Oh my Heart).[4]

Ishay Levi is the brother of the Mizrahi musician and singer Nati Levi.[5]


External links[edit]