The Mishnah Shabbat 6:1 states:

במה אשה יוצאה ובמה אינה יוצאה. ... ולא בעיר של זהב.

The commentaries explain that the "City of Gold" is Yerushalayim.

Why is it forbidden to go out with Yerushalayim Shel Zahav on Shabbat? Obviously playing the song on an MP3 player or live instrument is forbidden, but this seems to imply that even walking around with the lyrics or sheet music is forbidden. (How about singing? Is that allowed?)

What does the Mishnah have against the song?

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closed as off-topic by msh210 Mar 14 '17 at 22:12

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  • You didn't mention if the place that you are carrying in has an eruv. Thus, it's not a problem with the song - the problem is carrying! You may want to edit in this caveat. – DanF Mar 1 '17 at 18:44
  • Obviously playing the song on an MP3 player... is forbidden, Why is this obvious? – mevaqesh Mar 1 '17 at 19:18
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    Tsiyyyyoiiiinim! Gevaaaaalt! – mevaqesh Mar 1 '17 at 19:19
  • @mevaqesh Because it's an electronic device on Shabbat... – Scimonster Mar 1 '17 at 19:19
  • And why is it obvious that it is forbidden to use those? – mevaqesh Mar 1 '17 at 19:19

While carrying sheet music is usually fine within an 'eruv, many pieces of sheet music are lead sheets in our days. As lead sheets include chords, Chazal were worried that one would come to play a musical instrument on Shabbos and thus forbade them.

It is further brought by R' B.R Kli in the name of R' Jules Yiard that a musician must be proficient in the reading of lead sheets to play music in an ensemble (Klei Zemer 10:1).

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    This answers sounds like it comes from a musician. If I assume correctly, what instrument do you play? – DanF Mar 1 '17 at 21:30
  • @DanF, mainly voice – Noach MiFrankfurt Mar 1 '17 at 21:31
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    Ah yes ... the nose is an excellent instrument :-0 – DanF Mar 1 '17 at 21:32
  • What's special about chords here? – Scimonster Mar 3 '17 at 15:03
  • @Scimonster, chords aren't useful for singing, they're only useful for playing instruments. – Noach MiFrankfurt Mar 3 '17 at 16:03

I assume that you are referring to someone carrying this song where there is an Eruv, otherwise the Mishnah was against carrying.

The song, Yerushalayim Shel Zahav is written by Naomi Shemer. "Shemer" is related to the word Shamor which is a term used regarding keeping / observing Shabbat. It seems that the rabbis were concerned that people singing, carrying or having anything to do with this song on Shabbat would think that Naomi Shemer was responsible for Shabbat observance and not G-d.

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