The group’s name literally means “Snakefish” (dag=fish, nachash=snake), but it is also a Hebrew pun. In Israel, people who have only recently gotten their driver’s licences place a tag on their back window with the words “Nahag Chadash” (“new driver”). The anagram “HaDag Nachash” therefore indicates the group’s ambitions, as a voice for the youth in Israel.
The band’s icon, depicting a kid urinating, comes from the Hebrew idiom, loosely translated as, “Where does the fish piss from?” (מאיפה משתין הדג) meaning something akin to, “How it’s done” or “How things work.”
Like many Israeli pop musicians such as Teapacks (Tipex) and the Idan Raichel project, HaDag Nahash blend Western pop music and ethnic music to create a unique sound tapestry, somewhere between hip-hop and world music.
One of their most famous hits is “Shirat Hasticker” (known as “The Sticker Song” in English), written by Israeli novelist David Grossman. The lines in the song are all direct quotes or plays on slogans that actually appeared at some time on bumper stickers in Israel, but the unique collage of opposing political slogans juxtaposed against apolotical slogans, parodies and so forth creates an angry irony. Another song by the group, called “Sod Ha-Hatzlacha” (which translates to “The Secret of Success” in English) is displayed on their album “Lazuz” (“To Move”) and is considered one of their best songs.
Hadag Nahash has a minor rivalry with the famous Israeli hip-hop star Subliminal, as is shown in the lyrics of the song “Gabi V’Debi” (Gabby and Debi).
Hadag Nahash has sold out concerts in the US. They have seven members; their lead rapper and founder is Shaanan Streett. They have four albums out and are working on a fifth.
A few of their songs appear on Adam Sandler’s new movie “You Don’t Mess With The Zohan” (2008)
Edited by yodanr on 21 Mar 2009, 18:58
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