He lives in Lakewood, but the stage is his second home. He’s been performing for almost 15 years, touring the world, lighting up concerts, playing and singing his heart out to the tune of cheering fans. You know him as a performer extraordinaire. To his patients in the OR, he’s that nice, empathetic RN who hums as he works.
And to his bandmates, he’s Shua, the life and soul of Harmonics.
It’s been quite a journey for the young father of four. He started off as the “kid who sings well,” jumping onto stage at the behest of professional singers, pumping up family semachot, singing for ill children and other “just because” performing. Then the gigs started pouring in, and he traveled the world, performed at semachot, davened for the Yamim Nora’im and still lit up the dark world of sick children with his singing.
He toured Europe alongside Rav Paysach Krohn, lending a moving musical interlude to the emotional trips. He performed at Shabbat celebrations, Yom Tov and Chol Hamoed events and concerts, sang for multiple organizations for cholim, and performed for special and ill children.
Shua performed with many big names including Avraham Fried, MBD and others. When Avraham Fried canceled a performance at Camp HASC, Shua ably filled in, putting on an inspiring performance.
The composer of hundreds of songs, Shua has continued his musical exploits by embarking on a project to produce his first debut solo album titled “Lo Lihityaeish.” The album was a smashing hit and sold thousands worldwide. His songs have received high praise from some of the best-known Jewish music composers and arrangers, including Yossi Green and Yisroel Lamm.
Today, he’s decided to channel his talents and passion for song and music into his acoustic band. The band is managed by Moshe Antelis, a world-class renowned guitarist and bassist in his own right, who also joins Shua on guitar.
“Harmonics is the only one of its kind; a Jewish contemporary acoustic band,” Kessin explained. The band’s sound is classic and heartfelt, a mixture of kumzitz and soul. All members of the band sing backup vocals as well, adding a beautiful, harmonious sound to the performances.
Kessin himself plays several instruments, the harmonica being only one of them. The other band members play guitar, violin, bass and percussion/drums.
The most noteworthy attribute the band possesses, aside from their unbridled talent, is their ability to read a room and connect with it. They know when to play softly on the side, when to pump up the music and when to get a crowd on its feet.
Their music is versatile and fluid, appealing to anyone and everyone. This is undoubtedly attributed to Shua’s natural charisma, his ability to connect with a room of people, to make lifelong friends within minutes, and to leave everyone feeling uplifted and inspired through song. “Kind of like a modern-day Shlomo Carlebach,” a fan joked.
And like Carlebach, the band uses music more for passion than profit. Each one has a profession, a day job, but at night—or whenever they’re jamming—they meld into their own little Harmonics family.
They don’t only play Kessin originals; they love to take an old classic or a new hit and put a little extra oomph into the sound. Their viral music video, “Shir Lamaalot,” was originally composed by the talented Yosef Karduner. But Shua had fun putting his own touches on the song, turning something already wonderful into his own creation.
The group travels together, singing, performing and filling hearts with the sound of music. The band also gears their sound to match any need; whether for a Litvishe bar mitzvah, a Chassidishe sheva brachos, or a Sephardic bat mitzvah—you order, they deliver.
If you want to make your next event unforgettable, call the Harmonics and prepare to be uplifted, inspired and changed.
The band can be reached at www.harmonicsband.com or [email protected]. To reach Kessin directly, visit www.shuakessin.com or call 347.865.7700.