Old Ethiopian music is still popular with many people inside and outside Ethiopia. It gave birth to so many talented Ethiopian artists. You can hear their songs in many popular establishments, from hotels to travel places to museums.
Ethiopian music has come a long way, from the era of rudimentary instruments to the modern age. Ethiopian music comes in different varieties. In addition to the traditional varieties, we find Ethio-jazz, hip-hop, soul, etc. Ethiopian music is dominated by Amharic music, which has its roots in Amhara region and the capital, Addis Ababa. Amharic is the most commonly-used language in Ethiopia and the official national language.
When we talk about Ethio-Jazz, there are many artists who left their mark among Ethiopians. The following five artists are some of our favorite ones who rocked the chart for decades.
Ethio-jazz is one of the most beloved music in all of Ethiopia. You can hear it in café’s, restaurants, hotels, services places, etc. Mulatu is the grand-dad of Ethio-jazz and a genuine pioneer in the development of this music. Born in the western Ethiopian city of Jimma, Mulatu was musically trained in London, New York City, and Boston where he combined his jazz and Latin music interests with traditional Ethiopian music. This melody wound up celebrated after it was matched up to a motion picture during the ’90s called ‘Broken Flowers’. From that point forward, Ethio-jazz has gradually re-appeared as a mainstream sort throughout the world. Always please to listen, it is a great entertainment in evening hours after work or weekends.
Mahmoud Ahmed is an Ethiopian singer from the Gurage ethnic group. He gained great popularity in Ethiopia in the 1970s. He also rose to international fame with African music fans in Europe and the Americas. Mahmood Ahmed is the Frank Sinatra of Ethiopia. Mahmoud Ahmed sings Tizeta (love melodies) like nobody else. A singer who is passionate about his first love music and is the personal favorite among many Ethiopians. Mahmoud Ahmed is still going strong, even at his advanced age. You can see him swinging in key celebrations and events in the capital, Addis Ababa.
The Ethiopian saxophonist Tèsfa-Maryam Kidané was one of the most remarkable stylists of his generation. Between 1965 and 1972, he emerged as a brilliant, inspired player. He was influenced by the American radio programs broadcast from the US base in Asmara. Today he still works there, mainly in the clubs of Ethiopian and Eritrean diasporas. Heywete is at present our own favorite. It truly feels like the soundtrack of an urgent time. It is a timeless piece that is still being enjoyed by many inside Ethiopia and Eritrea.
Producer Dexter Story had a life-affirming experience when he went to Lalibela, Ethiopia, from his home in Los Angeles. Inspired by the sounds of Ethio-jazz and East African soul and folk music, the multi-instrumentalist recorded his latest 12-song album called Wondem, inspired by his love for Ethiopian music.
The creation of the album led Story to immerse himself completely in the country’s history and culture. He documented this experience on his cellphone, crafting the footage into colorful videos to accompany two of the album’s singles.
Dexter has taken the tremendous Ethio-jazz tunes and deciphered them into English with a cutting-edge soul/jazz turn, extremely particular.
Some portion of what we adore about Ethiopian music is the shared vitality that is aroused from the tunes and penetrating applauds. We cherish Aha Gedawo melody as it is a work of art and Bizunesh Bekele’s variant is so pleasant unlike any other. She has the most unique voice of the land, and for so long she has been the queen of Ethio-jazz.
If you would like to listen to varieties of Ethiopian music and/or watch some of the most fabulous collection of Ethiopia movies, please visit Ezega Entertainment at ezega.com today.