Former Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball star and sports TV commentator LayZ Gordon is hoping to score a dunk with his latest project - a song and video clip aimed to promote tourism to Israel.
The 48-year-old athlete-turned-musician, inspirational speaker and athletic trainer has released “Oh My Holy Land,” a jazz/gospel tune accompanied by an ambitious video clip aimed at Christian viewers – and potential visitors - in the US.
Instead of the tried and true travelogues showing Israeli sites, beaches and cities, Gordon and the clip’s director and script writer Roy Gluska, chose to focus on the country’s hidden resource – its people.
“Look, we can’t teach Christians about the stones, but we can show him the bones, and we can’t teach them about the places, but we can show them the faces,” said the gregarious Gordon this week. “If you feel comfortable with the people, then it lessens the apprehensions about coming here.”
The song’s catchy refrain "Oh My Holy Land" with background vocals by Hillary Sergeant, Adi Hall and Roni Ginossar is accompanied by Gluska’s story line about a widowed accountant who find his own holy land by leaving the office and taking his private plane above Israel’s skies with a photo of his late wife in the cockpit.
Interspersed are close-ups of Israelis young and old doing tai-chi, fishing, and running on the beach.
“I just told Roy I wanted to show Israel in a different way than it’s usually portrayed. The clip is about how each person finds his own holy land – everybody’s got a point in the day when you find that place that means something to them,” said Gordon.
“We’ve tried for so long to give the whole picture, and it hasn’t really paid off by bringing more tourists. I think it’s more effective to show it in a small, up close and personal way,” he added.
He’s hoping that the clip will be adopted by official Israeli bodies and ministries and is willing to travel the world promoting it and the country. Any takers?