Adam Duritz from the band Counting Crows. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP) Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP
Adam Duritz

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Jewish frontman of rock band Counting Crows reminisces about working in Israeli kibbutz.

By Shiryn Ghermezian, The Algemeiner

Ahead of his band’s first concert in Israel, Counting Crows frontman Adam Duritz talked about visiting the Jewish state for the first time since he was a teenager and his time working on a kibbutz.

“I’m very excited,” the American rock band’s lead singer, who is of Jewish-Russian origin, told Ynet about coming to Israel this month. “I’ve visited before but thrilled about getting to play. Hopefully I’ll have time to explore as well.”

Duritz has not visited Israel since he was 18, when he worked at Kibbutz Nir Oz in southern Israel. He told the publication in a Zoom interview that the experience “taught me what work is. To wake up at the break of dawn everyday to work with your hands.”

Duritz shared a memory about getting into trouble for throwing an apple at someone while working at an apple field and also remembered having to clean the chicken coop, which he said “was disgusting.” He told Ynet that doing manual labor on the kibbutz taught him skills that later helped him find jobs in construction and landscaping to support himself while he tried to launch his music career.

The singer’s former bandmate Marty Jones, from their band The Himalayans, helped Duritz get his first construction job. Jones and his father inspired Counting Crows’ hit song “Mr. Jones.”

Counting Crows’ first ever performance in Israel will take place on September 14 at the Ra’anana Amphitheater as part of the band’s “The Butter Miracle Tour,” named after their latest album released in May 2021.

“I have no idea what the show [in Israel] will be like,” Duritz told Ynet. “We don’t write the setlist for a show until sometime after dinner that night. I know we’ll play the entire suite that night but it’s only about 20 minutes long, so there’s plenty of concert left to play songs from every record.”

When asked whether Counting Crows have been targeted by BDS supporters who have pressured many other artists to not perform in Israel, he replied, “I have not … So far, it’s been a positive ride.”