GUY GEFEN: So for me, the name Heartbeat is because we play to the heartbeat. We are all born with our heartbeat, you know. And it's something that really unifies as human.

I have a lot of friends who keep telling me stuff like, “Eh, it's impossible. Peace can't be achieved." I'm asking them, “How many Palestinians have you ever met? How many Palestinians did you ever talk with? How many Palestinians did you create something with?”

Every rehearsal we are meeting Heartbeat, I experience peace in real life. And when we are now touring in the U.S., we are equal, we have peace. And peace is not only something that the governments will sign on a paper and that's it, we'll have peace. Peace can be created through people without any governments getting involved.

SIWAR MANSOUR: We all come from different backgrounds, we all come from different societies, from different beliefs. And I'm a Muslim, and a lot of people, some are Jewish. I actually don't know if anyone is Christian; some don't believe. But it's really magical how all of a sudden, music becomes our faith.

MOHAMMED "MOODY" KABLAWI: At shabbat, we sometimes sit together and bless our food together. So that's how it goes in Heartbeat. It's not just a religion and music and a social life, we are equal in everything.

(speaking to audience): For me, Heartbeat is proof that music can be a common language between different people from different cultures. Isn't that beautiful? (laughter, cheers)

GUY: In Heartbeat, we respect the religion in the same way we respect life cause it's a part of the human fabric.

SIWAR: We don't think who's Israeli and who's Palestinian. It doesn't matter. The music does something that words can't.

GUY: I'm pretty sure that the majority of the world wants peace and wants to live happily ever after, but it's up to all of us, it's up to everyone.


Watch our interviews with musicians from Heartbeat, an international, interfaith nonprofit organization that “creates opportunities and spaces for young Israeli and Palestinian musicians to work together, hear each other, and amplify their voices to influence the world around them.” Based in Jerusalem, Heartbeat “unites musicians, educators, and students to build mutual understanding and transform conflict through the power of music.” This performance–made up mostly of songs composed by members of the band, from “I said why won’t you let this go?” to “What’s the wall good for?”–was part of a recent US tour. It took place at Busboys and Poets in Washington, DC. Video by Murray Pinczuk. Edited by Fred Yi. Interviews by Missy Daniel.