Matisyahu, who stormed on the music scene in 2004 with his single ‘King Without a Crown’, surprised fans and the Jewish community Tuesday when he tweeted a picture of himself completely shaved and beardless. Born and raised as a “Chassidic Jewish Reggae Star”, the musician followed tradition by not cutting his beard and growing peyos (sidelocks).
He also took to his website to explain the sudden decision:
This morning I posted a photo of myself on Twitter.
No more Chassidic reggae superstar.
Sorry folks, all you get is me…no alias. When I started becoming religious 10 years ago it was a very natural and organic process. It was my choice. My journey to discover my roots and explore Jewish spirituality—not through books but through real life. At a certain point I felt the need to submit to a higher level of religiosity…to move away from my intuition and to accept an ultimate truth. I felt that in order to become a good person I needed rules—lots of them—or else I would somehow fall apart. I am reclaiming myself. Trusting my goodness and my divine mission.
Get ready for an amazing year filled with music of rebirth. And for those concerned with my naked face, don’t worry…you haven’t seen the last of my facial hair.