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Berry Sakharof

Berry Sakharof
Berry Sakharof.
Background information
Born (1957-07-07) July 7, 1957
Izmir, Turkey
Genres Rock, alternative rock, post-punk
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter
Instruments Vocals, guitar
Years active 1973–present
Labels Nana Disc
Associated acts Minimal Compact, Foreign Affair, Fortisakharof.

Berry Sakharof (Hebrew: ברי סחרוף‎; born July 7, 1957) is an Israeli rock guitarist, songwriter and singer. Sakharof is one of Israel's most popular and critically acclaimed rock musicians. He is nicknamed "the prince of Israeli rock".


  • Biography 1
    • Start of career 1.1
    • The Eighties 1.2
    • The Nineties 1.3
    • The 2000s 1.4
    • Recent activity 1.5
  • Discography 2
    • Solo Albums 2.1
    • With Minimal Compact 2.2
    • With Fortisakharof 2.3
    • With Foreign Affair 2.4
  • References 3
  • External links 4


Sakharof was born in İzmir,[1] Turkey in 1957 into a Jewish family. His family immigrated to Israel when he was 3 years old.

Start of career

Sakharof started his musical career at the age of 16 as a member of Cosmic Dream. Another member was his friend, Rami Fortis. Together they performed in rock clubs in Israel.

The Eighties

Sakharof first came to public attention in the 1980s.

Right after his military service Sakharof flew to Belgium where he became a founding member of post-punk band Minimal Compact, the first Israeli rock band to achieve significant success outside Israel. The band recorded six albums, all released on Crammed Discs.

In 1988, Minimal Compact broke up after the members did not get work visas for the United States, where they planned a concert tour. Sakharof and fellow former Minimal Compact guitarist Rami Fortis began an extended period of collaboration, eventually returning to Israel and producing many songs.

The Nineties

After leaving Fortis, Sakharof continued producing albums. The album Signs of Weakness (Simanim Shel Khulsha) (סימנים של חולשה), a collaboration with multi-instrumentalist and producer Rea Mochiach, was chosen as the 11th best album ever (and the highest ranking for an Israeli album) by a readers' poll on the popular news site ynet.[2]

By the mid-1990s, Sakharof's was one of the highest-grossing live acts in Israel, and he was commonly referred to in the media as the "prince of Israeli rock" [2].

Sakharof's biggest commercial success came in 1998 with the release of Touches (נגיעות), the sales of which reached platinum within several days.

The 2000s

In 2001 his album "The Other" (האחר) was released. The album included the song "Lord of World" which was written by Barry Hazak, a soldier who died in the Yom Kippur War and a cover of Ehud Banai's song "City of Refuge". The album's name was taken from the perception of "The Other" (French: 'L'autre') of the French philosopher Emmanuel Lévinas, who is also quoted in the album's booklet. "Monsoon", that was written by Micha Shitrit and Berry Sakharof, was the only song from the album broadcast on the radio as a single. In the same year Sakharof wrote soundtracks for two Israeli movies.

In 2002, Sakharof collaborated with Erez Aizen and Amit Duvedevani of Infected Mushroom to create the Birthday EP.

In 2003 he produced the debut album of the band Biluim named "the Biluim".

During 2005 his album 11 Alef (11א) was released. The album is the result of about two years of mutual work with Rea Mochiach (who moved to the United States after the release of the album 'Signs of Weakness') during Mochiach's occasional visits to Israel. The album was sold in the first week only on the Internet in the MP3 format and later released to the music stores; due to the release of the album Mochiach arrived in Israel and participated in a short concert tour with Sakharof.

In 2006 Sakharof reunited with Fortis for a new album and a tour.

Recent activity

Sakharof continues to play gigs, mostly in Israel, but also some shows in America and other parts of the world. in 2009 he released "Ibn Gabirol", a concept album that has a melancholic tone to it and deals with lyrics written by "Solomon Ibn Gabirol" one of the greatest Jewish poets of the Middle Ages, a man that died prematurely but left with his poetry a heritage for hundreds of years. the album is not a rock-album but traditional middle-eastern instruments and songwriting comes into play.

2011 Sakharof released another solo album, "you are here" (Ata Nimtza kaan), which again brings the classic Sakharof-style with electric guitars, drum computers, synths, bass and vocals. The lyrics cover a wide range of topics, from the high holydays (Jamim haNoraim), over a ghostly town (Lochesch baMchoniot), to relationship problems (Nechama, Zman shel Misparim). The song "Ha Derekh le Arad" (the road down to Arad) paints the picture of a dried out desert landscape that is waiting for the fulfillment of the prophecies, when the Jewish people will be visited by their king, who will appear victoriously. "the wolf that will dwell with them, is not yet born" (haZeev shejagur itam, adain lo nolad...).

Minimal Compact also played some revival-gigs in late 2011 with the almost 60-year-old Samy Birnbach on vocals and a rare stage presence of Malka Spigel on bass guitar.


Solo Albums

  • 1991 - All or Nothing (Ha'col O Clum)
  • 1993 - Signs of Weakness (Simanim Shel Khulsha)
  • 1995 - Calor en la luna
  • 1998 - Touchings (Negiot)
  • 2001 - The Other (Ha'akher)
  • 2003 - Live 93-02
  • 2005 - 11a
  • 2009 - Ibn Gabirol, Red Lips (Even Gvirol, Adumey Ha'Sefatot)
  • 2011 - You Are Here (Ata Nimtsa Can)

With Minimal Compact

  • 1981 - Minimal Compact (EP)
  • 1982 - One by One
  • 1984 - Deadly Weapons
  • 1984 - Next One Is Real (EP)
  • 1985 - Raging Souls
  • 1986 - Immigrants Songs
  • 1987 - The Figure One Cuts
  • 1988 - Live
  • 1988 - Lowlands Flight
  • 2004 - Music From Upstairs: Archives & Experiments
  • 2004 - Returning Wheel

With Fortisakharof

  • 1988 - tales from the box (sipurim mehakufsa)
  • 1990 - 1900?
  • 1992 - When the Guitar Is Sawing the Night
  • 2006 - On the Watch

With Foreign Affair

  • 1989 - East on Fire
  • 1990 - Sandanya (EP)


  1. ^ Berry Sakharof
  2. ^ מצעד 100 האלבומים הטובים בכל הזמנים, YNet

External links

  • Official site (Hebrew)
  • UnOfficial archive (Hebrew)
  • Berry Sakharof at MOOMA (Hebrew)
  • Berry Sakharof discography at Discogs
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