# 2635 Face The Music Again


Q. May one listen to music during sefira to avoid depression due to the current (covid) matzav?
A. The tradition not to listen to music during Sefira days has become widely accepted in our days, and according to Poskim it includes even non live music such as taped music. (Igrois Moshe O.H. 1: 166, Minchas Yitzchok, 1: 111, Oz Nidberu 8: 58, Yechave Daas 6:34, Tzitz Eliezer 15: 33, Kinyan Torah 2: 99 and many others). However, Chelkas Yaakov (1: 62) argues that an electronic device which did not exist at the time when the decree became accepted, cannot be included in the gezera.
There are some exceptions to this minhag, such as listening to classical music On question 281 we wrote: Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit”a opinion is that in principle serious or cheerless classical music would be permitted (during Sefira) as we do sing a sad tune even on Tisha B’av (Eli Tzion). However it is likely that while listening to a symphony, parts of it may meet the criteria of the mood markings of allegro, animato, or giocoso. It is therefore advisable to refrain from listening to all music, unless needed for therapeutic purposes.
On question 1305 we added that the same should apply to playing classical music on a piano or other instruments.
On question 1711 in regard to teaching dancing classes during Sefira, we wrote: “Mogen Avrohom (493: 1) rules that non-mitzva dancing is prohibited during Sefira days. However, Igrois Moshe (O.H. 3: 87) permits teaching instrumental music when it is done as a professional duty and not for enjoyment. See Naharos Eisan (p. 252) in regards to permitting singing and playing music for children in school.
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that one should avoid if possible attending or teaching dancing classes during Sefira,”
On question 1312, regarding if one is allowed to have a telephone ringtone that is a segment of a song with musical instruments, we wrote: “There are Poiskim who permit listening to music that is not played for the sake of enjoyment or pleasure, as one who employs workers that listen to the radio as they work, or music that is played for a child to calm him to sleep. (Nitei Gavriel , Bein Hametzorim ch. 15, 8-13). Some Poiskim understand the music prohibition as only what conduces to joy and dancing, and permit classical music, played for soothing and comforting the soul. (Shoalin Vedorshim p. 245). However, others disagree.
Similarly they permit to play music to calm a young child, or to listen to music while driving, if the purpose of the music is to keep the driver alert.
Shoishanas Yisroel (Ben Hametzorim 1: 18) mentions that one should change the ringtone of his phone, if it was recorded for the purpose of joy.
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that in the onset, one should avoid this type of ringtone the year around. However, once set it does not have to be removed.”
On question 1401 regarding listening to a happy tune on the phone while being placed on hold, we added: “Horav Shlomo Miller Shlit’a pointed out that most people do not enjoy being placed on hold, no matter what music is being played.”
On question 1390, addressing if one can listen to tapes of chazanos of tefilos, during the three weeks, if one is interested in knowing the nusach and the nigunim, when one davens for the amud on Shabbos or Yomim Noraim, we wrote” Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is that in principle if they are not melodies of simcha and joy, rather the normal nigunim that a chazan or a baal tefila sing by the amud, that express more sentiment, fervor and emotion than happiness and delight, they are permitted to listen to or sing even during the tefilos of the nine days, especially if one’s intention is only for learning them. The fact is that even on Tisha Beav we do sing Keli-Tzion. However, when listening to chazonus, the nigunim may change suddenly to happy and joyful to be avoided songs.
Nitei Gavriel (Pesach 3: 53: 7), Hilchos Chag B’chag (p.63), Halichos Shlomo, (Moadim 2:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.