Instantly transportive

Israel’s Ofra Haza makes Rolling Stone’s top 200 singers of all time

Music magazine says the late artist, who came second in 1983 Eurovision, combed traditional vocal conventions with modern technique to create something ‘ahead of its time’

Rolling Stone on Sunday named iconic Israeli singer Ofra Haza among the 200 greatest singers of all time.

Haza, who died in 2000, was ranked at 186 by the magazine.

“Inspired by her Yemeni-Jewish ancestry, Haza combined traditional vocal conventions with modern technique to create something that felt at once ancient and ahead of its time,” it said.

Rolling Stone praised Haza’s 1984 hit “Im Nin’alu” as “instantly transportive, sweeping the listener up in her expressive, fluttery mezzo-soprano.”

The list was compiled by Rolling Stone staff and what it described as key contributors, and encompassed “100 years of pop music as an ongoing global conversation.”

Aretha Franklin was placed top.

The “deep, empathetic bond between artist and listener is the most elemental connection in music,” the magazine said. “What mattered most to us was originality, influence, the depth of an artist’s catalog, and the breadth of their musical legacy.”

Haza was born in Tel Aviv in 1957. She was known for her mix of Middle Eastern and pop techniques, which scored her gold and platinum discs.

Haza represented Israel at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1983 with her hit “Hi” [Alive], coming in second. During her career, which included multiple hits, she also sang in soundtracks for movies such as “Dick Tracy” and “The Prince of Egypt.”

She died of AIDS in 2000.

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