Template:Listening to Music during the Three Weeks
This is the approved revision of this page, as well as being the most recent.
- It’s forbidden to listen to music from musical instruments during the three weeks. 
- Many authorities forbid listening to recorded music (music with instruments) during the three weeks. 
- If one is driving and is scared of falling asleep, he may listen to music. 
- Programs or other occasions where the musical accompaniment is incidental to the main event may be attended or viewed. 
Live a cappella (singing without instruments)
- Some say that one may not listen to a cappella music if it is dancing music.
- Some say that one may listen to vocal music (voices singing) during the three weeks but not the 9 days. 
- Many say that it is permissible to sing with one's mouth during the three weeks. 
Non-live a cappella
- Some say that listening to recorded vocal music is forbidden, while others permit. 
Singing on Your own
- Singing with one’s mouth is permitted during the three weeks. 
- Although some poskim permit listening to music on Friday after midday during the Three Weeks, most disagree.
- Some permit music at a meal for a Siyum Masechet of a Gemara (or the like) during the Three Weeks.
- Some permit music at a meal for a Pidyon HaBen during the three weeks. 
- A shehecheyanu should be recited for the pidyon haben during the three weeks. 
- Some say that at a Sheva Berachot during the three weeks may not have dancing or music,  others permit dancing but no music,  and others permit both dancing and music. 
- It is permissible and a mitzvah to learn Torah with a tune and niggun even during the three weeks. 
A Music teacher or Musician
- Someone who’s profession is to play music before non-Jews or to teach music (and there would be a loss of money if he stops teaching music) may continue until the week of Tisha BeAv but it’s better to be strict from the beginning of the nine days. 
- Some poskim permit taking music lessons if they are not for pleasure and one will forget some skills in his time off. 
- Sh”t Kapei Aharon 52 writes that it’s clearly forbidden to listen to music during the three weeks. Sh”t Igrot Moshe 1:166 and Sh"t Yechave Daat 6:34 agree. Nitei Gavriel 15:1 writes that this law is missing from S”A and early poskim because there’s a general prohibition of Listening to Music and so there was no question about the three weeks. [There is a hint to the prohibition in the Pri Megadim and Maharam Shik who discuss playing music for an income during the three weeks.] However, because many are lenient like the Rama (unlike S”A and Bach) and are lenient regarding music all year, this question became relevant and it’s unanimously accepted by contemporary poskim that music is forbidden during the three weeks because it brings with it simcha just like dancing (explicitly forbidden by Magen Avraham 551:10). See next notes.
- Yalkut Yosef (Moadim, 5748 edition, pg 554), Nitay Gavriel 15:1, Penieni Halacha (pg 144), Sh"t Shevet Halevi 6:69 and 8:127:2, Tzitz Eliezer 15:33:2, Divrei Shalom 3:118, Az Nidberu 8:58 and 10:23:2, Rivevot Ephraim 4:177, Halichot Shlomo Moadim 2:14:3 note 4, Or Litzion 3:25:2, Sh"t Iggerot Moshe OC 1:166 and 3:87, Torat Hamoadim 5:2, Sh”t Yachave Daat 6:34 and 3:30, Chazon Ovadyah (Arba Taniyot pg 151), and Rabbi Mansour in Daily Halacha hold that recorded music is forbidden during the three weeks. See also Sh"t Igrot Moshe YD 2:137, Minchat Yitzchak 1:111, Shalmat Chaim 29:1, Mishnat Sachir 2:145, Sh”t Ohel Yisachar 39.
- Or Litzion 3:25:2, Shevet Halevi 8:127:2.
- Rav Moshe Feinstein quoted in Ohalei Yeshurun page 128. Rav Mordachai Eliyahu (Mikraei Kodesh 7: note 14) was asked about listening to news which begins with a small tune, or waiting on hold with a tune in the background and he responded leniently. He added though that those who refrain even from listening to this shall be blessed.
- Rav Yitzchak Yosef (Motzei Shabbat Pinchas min 2-4) said that one shouldn't listen to recorded a cappella music if it is dancing music since the point of not listening to music in the three weeks is not to come to dance.
- Mekor Chaim 551:1 and Or letzion 3:25:2 write that during the 9 days one shouldn’t listen to even vocal music. This is brought as halacha in the Halachot UMinhagei Ben HaMesarim (by Rabbi Moshe Karp pg 25) and Nachmat Yisrael 3:3. Chazon Ovadyah (pg 151-4) and Torat Hamoadim 5:2 are lenient with vocal song that are praise to Hashem (especially for Shabbat including Shabbat Chazon).
- Mekadesh Yisroel (pg 20), Chut Shuni (Shabbat, vol 2, pg 325), Sh"t Shevet HaLevi 3:15, Halachically Speaking (Vol 5, Issue 13, note 46)
- Sh”t Shevet Halevi 6:69, 8:127:2, Nitei Gavriel 15:1, Sh”t Tzitz Eliezer 15:33, Piskei Shemuot (pg 54) quoting Rav Elyashiv and Rav Karlitz, and Nechmat Yisrael 3:4 forbid listening to a recorded vocal song. However, Sh”t Igrot Moshe YD 2:137 and Sh”t Yachave Daat 6:34 permit (regarding Jewish music). Halachically Speaking quotes Rav Yisrael Belsky and Rav Efraim Greenblatt who forbid listening to singing which is meant to simulate actual music such as A capella because it creates the same musical experience. Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz writes that most permit listening to recorded voices singing. Halichot Shlomo Moadim 2:14:footnote 5, Shalmei Moed page 478, Mekadesh Yisroel 21 permit listening to a CD of chazzanut without music even if one finds it enjoyable. Rav Shlomo Daichovsky techumin 21, argues that there is no source to prohibit music, whether during the Three Weeks, the Omer, or during the twelve month mourning period after losing a parent, and concludes that any music which will not lead to dancing is permitted.
- Mekadesh Yisrael 20, Shevet Halevi 3:157. However, Orchos Rabbeinu 2: page 95 is stringent except for on Shabbat.
- Rav Yitzchak Yosef (Motzei Shabbat Matot 5782 min 21) explained that it is forbidden as the kedusha of Shabbat does not begin at midday of Friday as we view in hilchot avelut. Tiferet 551:24 quotes Rav Meir Mazuz in Mekor Neeman 503 and Vayisbor Yosef siman 36 who are lenient because we wouldn't say tikkun chatzot starting with midday Friday. They are especially willing to permit a radio playing Jewish music for the purpose of kiruv.
- In general, Rama (551:3) permits music for a dvar mitzvah like a wedding. However, the Yavetz in his siddur (Amudei Shesh; quoted by Yafeh Lelev 560:7) writes that a simcha of a Brit Milah there should be no music. Eliyah Rabba 551:26 writes that the minhag is like the Yavetz. Regarding the three weeks Chida in Sh”t Chaim Shal 1:21 writes that the (Sephardic) minhag is to be lenient to have music at a meal of a Brit Milah. Ikrei HaDaat (Y”D 36:23), Sh”t Maaseh Avraham (Y”D 48), Moed Kol Chai (10:20), Ot Chaim VeShalom (the Munchatch Rebbe; 265:29), Torat HaMoadim 5:4, and Sh”t Yachave Daat 1:45 write that the Sephardic minhag is to be lenient by the meal of a Brit Milah. (It seems that Shirei Knesset HaGedolah 551:33 who’s strict regarding the party for a Milah at night, but would agree concerning the meal right after the Milah. Additionally, it seems Sh”t Igrot Moshe 1:166 would agree as he even discusses a tzedaka banquet regarding music the rest of the year.)
- Sh”t Yachave Daat 1:45 writes that music is permitted for a seudat mitzvah including a siyum. Torat HaMoadim 5:4 and Yalkut Yosef (Moadim, 5748 edition, pg 554) extend this to even during the three weeks.
- Sh”t Yechave Daat 1:45 permits music at a seudat mitzvah such as a Pidyon HaBen. Torat HaMoadim 5:4 and Yalkut Yosef (Moadim, 5748 edition, pg 554, and Yalkut Yosef Sova Semachot vol. 2 pg. 333) extend this to even during the three weeks.
- Shulchan Aruch 551:17, Moed Likol Chai 9:25, Yalkut Yosef Sova Semachot vol. 2 pg. 333
- Sh"t Yachava Daat 6:34, Yalkut Yosef (Moadim, 5748 edition, pg 554), and Torat HaMoadim 5:4 permit music at a simchat Bar Mitzvah during the three weeks. However, Darkei Horah (Dinei Ben Hametsarim pg 17, by Rav Asher Weiss) and Natai Gavriel (Ben HaMetzarim chapter 16:3) forbid. Halichot Emet 7:12 writes that the sephardic minhag is to be lenient and ashkenazic minhag is to be strict. Halachically Speaking writes that some are lenient.
- Sh"t Shevet Halevi 3:157, Orchos Rabbeinu 2:page 128:9, Moadim Uzmanim 8:338.
- Rav Moshe Feinstein quoted in Moadei Yeshurun page 129:11, Rav Elyashiv quoted in Avnei Yushfei 1:113, Sh"t Mishna Halachot 6:109, Chazon Ovadia Taaniot page 153
- Lehoros Noson 10:49.
- Sh”t Igrot Moshe O”C 166 permits all types of festivities of mitzvah and says that perhaps even a tzadeka banquet perhaps can be included. However, the Sh”t Igrot Moshe concludes that during the three weeks we are more strict regarding music and therefore there is almost nothing to rely on to play music at a tzedaka banquet.
- Sh”t Mishna Halachot 6:107, Sh”t Yachave Daat 6:34, Torat HaMoadim 5:2, Sedei Chemed (Peat Sadeh, Ben HaMetsarim 1:10),
- Chazon Ovadyah (Arba Taaniyot pg 156), Nitei Gavriel 15:6, Shearim Metzuyanim Bihalacha 122:1. See also Yalkut Yosef (Moadim, 5748 edition, pg 554), Beiur Halacha 551:2 "mimaatim", Iggerot Moshe OC 3:87, Rivevot Ephraim 6:291:1, Torat Hamoadim page 123, Betzel Hachochma 6:61, Kinyan Torah 2:99.
- Sh"t Tzitz Eliezer 16:19. Kaf Hachayim 551:41 writes that preferably it should not be done, and even if one is lenient it should only be sad songs. Miyum Hahalacha 1:83, Emes Liyaakov 551:footnote 506 also say that it is preferable not to. The Pri Megadim Eshel Avraham 551:10 writes that parallel to the concept of davar ha'aved on chol hamoed, the rabbis permitted somebody who needs to dance or play music for livelihood to do so.