I heard a long time ago that some people do not listen to live music and eat a meal at the same time, only at weddings? Is this a minhag or halacha?

  • 2
    See ShA OC 560:3
    – Double AA
    May 18, 2016 at 14:28
  • 2
    You have a split question, here. It's one thing to inquire about the source of the minhag, of which @DoubleAA has provided one. As to whether you, personally, may listen to live music - this becomes an off-topic halacha-advice question. You need to edit this question.
    – DanF
    May 18, 2016 at 14:47
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    May 18, 2016 at 15:54

1 Answer 1


The source is in Mishna Sota 9, 11:

מִשֶּׁבָּטְלָה סַנְהֶדְרִין, בָּטְלָה הַשִּׁיר מִבֵּית הַמִּשְׁתָּאוֹת, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (ישעיה כד) בַּשִּׁיר לֹא יִשְׁתּוּ יָיִן וְגוֹ':‏
דִּכְתִיב (אֵיכָה ה) זְקֵנִים מִשַּׁעַר שָׁבָתוּ בַּחוּרִים מִנְּגִינָתָם, בַּזְּמַן שֶׁבָּטְלוּ הַזְּקֵנִים הַיּוֹשְׁבִים בַּשַּׁעַר שֶׁהֵם הַסַּנְהֶדְרִין, בָּטְלוּ הַבַּחוּרִים מִנְּגִינָתָם גַּם כֵּן:‏
When the sanhedrin ceased [to function], song ceased from the places of feasting; as it is said, they shall not drink wine with a song etc. Bartenura summarize the Gemara: The source is a verse in Megilat Eicha (5, 14) "The elders have ceased from the gate, the young men from their music.". When the elders have ceased from the gate, the young men ceased from their music.
Ykar Tosfot Yom Tov:
פֵּרְשׁוּ הַפּוֹסְקִים בְּשֵׁם רַב הַאי גָּאוֹן זִכְרוֹנוֹ לִבְרָכָה דְּהַיְנוּ שִׁיר שֶׁל אַהֲבָה שֶׁבֵּין אָדָם לַחֲבֵרוֹ וּלְשַׁבֵּחַ יָפֶה בְּיָפְיוֹ. אֲבָל שִׁירוֹת וְתִשְׁבָּחוֹת וְזִכְרוֹן חֲסָדִים שֶׁל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא מִנְהָג כָּל יִשְׂרָאֵל לְאָמְרָן בְּבֵית חֲתֻנָּה וּבְבֵית הַמִּשְׁתָּאוֹת בְּקוֹל נְגִינוֹת וּבְקוֹל שִׂמְחָה: מִשּׁוּם דִּמְנָלָן דְּמִשֶּׁבָּטְלָה סַנְהֶדְרִין כְּתִיב כִּדְאִיתָא בַּגְּמָרָא, וּמִשּׁוּם דִּבְהַאי קְרָא לֹא כְּתִיב בֵּיהּ דְּאָסוּר אֶלָּא מַשְׁמַע דְּנִשְׁבַּת מֵאֵלָיו, לְהָכִי מַיְתֵי מַתְנִיתִין קְרָא בַּשִּׁיר לֹא יִשְׁתּוּ, דִּלְמֵיסַר מַשְׁמַע: וְהֵם הַזְּקֵנִים שֶׁאָמַר הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עֲלֵיהֶן תִּתֵּן לְךָ בְּכָל שְׁעָרֶיךָ. הָרַמְבַּ"ם:‏
Poskim commented in name of Rav Hay Gaon that the prohibited songs are songs about friendship or songs that praise beauty of beautiful people. But extol and remembering bonty of the Holy One Blessed be He are custom of all Jewish people, particularly on Sheva Brachot. In the verse of Lamentations they do not mention prohibition but a discontinuing reaction. For this reason the Mishna quoted an other verse (Isaiah 24, 9) "They drink not wine with a song" which states a prohibition (taken from Rambam).

In Rambam Zemanim, Taaniot, 5, 14 we see that a greater problem exist with music instruments because he mention them as prohibited even without wine drinking. And in Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 560, 3 the Rama adds in name of the Tur that music instrument are only prohibited as habit, as kings who are basking with instrumental music background, or restaurants (festivities, party locations). Following the explanation of the Mishna berura 560, sk 12 in name of Pri megadim, it is prohibited to sit down at a sidewalk cafe while the orchestra play or in a piano bar, even without wine drinking and with habit. See the Mishna Berura for more details.


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