Blogtrotters

Showing posts with label pop. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pop. Show all posts

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Tsedenia Gebremarkos - Bisetegn [1996] [ethiopia]





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                                                            Tsedenia Gebremarkos




           Tsedenia Gebremarkos is an Ethiopian artist. She has released songs about HIV/AIDS. She shared the prize for best East African female at the Kora Awards in 2004 for the song "Ewedhalehu", with Achien'g Abura (Kenya) for her song "Toto Wangu.

         Tsedenia has recently worked with the Ethiopian dub band Dub Colossus. They released an EP, 'A Town Called Addis' in June 2008 through Real World Records and a full length LP album of the same name was released in August 2008 exclusively through the Bowers & Wilkins Music Club.

         She also sang two songs on the album Punt (Made in Ethiopia) by Invisible System released on Harper Diabate Records and produced by Dub Colossus cousin Dan Harper.












01. Tsedenia - Eketelehalehu (4:03)
02. Tsedenia - Bisetegn (5:30)
03. Tsedenia - Neh Yeliginete (5:49)
04. Tsedenia - Atalay (6:26)
05. Tsedenia - Yiker Beyalehu (5:23)
06. Tsedenia - Mengedegna (5:18)
07. Tsedenia - Endanetezazeb (4:12)
08. Tsedenia - Ewedehalehu (5:44)
09. Tsedenia - Mirchye (4:52)
10. Tsedenia - Ewnatun Negeregn (5:29)
11. Tsedenia - Aleskorememem (6:04)











Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Jano Band - Live Performance [2016] [ethiopia]











       Setting the trend for the Jano sound is a new synthesis which injects Ethiopian music into the genre of rock to create hot and harmoniously wild sounding of Ethiopian rock. Behind it is Jano, a band consisting two female vocalists, two male lead vocalists and six musicians who play bass guitar, rhythm guitar, lead guitar, keyboards and a drum. The two things the players have in common is that all of them are in their twenties and all share a single dream – to become the first international rock phenomena from Ethiopia.

         The man behind the making of Jano is Addis Gassesse, a renowned Ethiopian music manager who shuttles between Addis Abeba, New York and Kingston, Jamaica. Now Addis wants to get Jano play at international concerts and compete with any rock band on the world stage.






Jano Band - Darigne




       Jano has a unique way of showing the flare of its members, who, some of them came from different gospel choirs. The fusion of Ethiopian music with Rock is a complete detachment from the long tradition of music norm. But the songs are partly written by the band members themselves and partly by Yilma Gabreab, a popular Ethiopian song writer. The result is the first ever rock band in Ethiopia.

       While some of the band members have been heavily influenced by rock stars such as the Rolling Stones and Metallica, others have been influenced by jazz, pop and reggae. This diverse background of the members can be clearly seen in the unique sound of their music that takes its nuances from an eclectic assortment of styles that, deep down, didn’t abandon an Ethiopian flavor.









Jano Band are:

Kirubel Tesfaye (Band Leader and synthesizer)
Michael Hailu (Musical Director and Lead Guitar)
Dibekulu Tafesse (vocals)
Haleluya Tekletsadik (vocals)
Hewan Gebrewold (vocals)
Hailu Merga (vocals)
Yohannes Mekonen (drums)
Daniel Negash (bass)






Jano Band - 01 - Andnen (ft. Pamfalon) (6:14)
Jano Band - 02 - Darigne (3:35)
Jano Band - 03 - Yinegal (4:09)
Jano Band - 04 - Gude (Live) (6:20)
Jano Band - 05 - Mariye (Live) (6:28)
Jano Band - 06 - Mehed Mehed (Live) (7:09)
Jano Band - 07 - Gara Sir New Bete (Live) (3:50)
Jano Band - 08 - Ayrak (Live) (6:50)





Monday, August 22, 2016

Aster Aweke - Fikir [2006] [ethiopia]




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       Aster Aweke is often called “Africa’s Aretha Franklin” and has in the past few years been based in America. She was born in Ethiopia into the family of a well-to-do government official. In the mid 1970s the young Aster began to orientate herself with the music of her homeland, and sang with several local groups until 1977. 

       She was backed by one of the leading figures in the world of Ethiopian music, Ali Tango, not least financially. 

      Aster Aweke began to sing with the established group, Roha Band, but broke up with them after a short time when Ethiopia was thrown into political and economic chaos at the time of the revolution. After a few years of traveling around she settled down in Washington, USA. Aster Aweke is a very competent vocalist who sings in an American-influenced style but who nevertheless has preserved an undiscovered core of Africa.


    Aster Aweke must be heard! 







01. Aster Aweke - Fikir (6:08)
02. Aster Aweke - And Adirgen (6:52)
03. Aster Aweke - Netsa Negn (5:16)
04. Aster Aweke - Sewenatae (5:52)
05. Aster Aweke - Ayzoh (5:21)
06. Aster Aweke - Emyae (4:17)
07. Aster Aweke - Lishelimew (5:01)
08. Aster Aweke - Yesew-sew (6:17)
09. Aster Aweke - Azezo (5:51)
10. Aster Aweke - Chal-Chal (4:53)
11. Aster Aweke - Yikirta (5:07)
12. Aster Aweke - Yeamral (6:06)
13. Aster Aweke - Nefsae (6:21)
14. Aster Aweke - Murit (5:21)






Saturday, April 30, 2016

Invisible System - Street Clan [2011] [eng]




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Invisible System - Street Clan




       Invisible System return with another highly original eclectic fusion album. Following their internationally acclaimed and Songlines World Music Awards Best Newcomer Nominated CD Punt (Made in Ethiopia), Street Clan is named after some graffiti Dan Harper found in Mali, West Africa. It is again not a pure world music album. It covers genres such as rock, dance, drum and bass, dub, reggae, Ethiopian, post-punk, kraut rock, pop, psychedelia and even this time r'n'b and dubstep.

      17 tracks take you through a real journey of shockingly original pulsating sounds that tie to Punt but sound more accomplished and distinctive in style. The album was again recorded between Ethiopia, Mali and the UK whilst Dan Harper was aid working, with the mixing finished in country. Many known guests again feature on this album including Portishead's Adrian Utley and Skip McDonald (African Head Charge, The Sugar Hill Gang, Tackhead and Little Axe.








          It’s impossible not to admire Dan Harper. Until five years ago, he was an aid worker in Ethiopia, where he not only became fascinated by the country’s remarkable music scene but built his own studio in Addis Ababa and managed to persuade leading local artists to record with him. He also invited producer and bassist Nick Page, also known as Count Dubulah, out to Ethiopia and introduced him to his musical friends; as a result, Page formed his highly successful Ethiopian fusion band Dub Colossus.

     Once he returned to England, where he now works as an unconventional music teacher in the West Country, Harper continued work on a fusion project of his own. He persuaded an impressive selection of British musicians to add their contributions to his Ethiopian recordings, and the result was the album Punt, credited to a band Harper called Invisible System. It included a remarkable cast, from the legendary Ethiopian singer Mahmoud Ahmed through to punk hero Captain Sensible, guitarist Justin Adams and Count Dubulah; the results veered from African styles to psychedelic rock, trip-hop and dub. Although this was originally something of an obscure DIY release, Harper managed to bring his work to national attention, and won impressive reviews.

        Since then, the two Ethiopian fusion experiments have continued. Dub Colossus, now a rousing live band rather than merely a studio project, have a new album of Ethio-jazz and reggae fusions, Addis Through the Looking Glass, while Invisible System have a very different second set, Street Clan.

         Once again, the album is based around recordings that Harper made in Africa – this time in Mali as well as Ethiopia – to which he adds his own guitar, bass, synth programming, percussion and production work. Then there are contributions from a new set of Western musicians, including the great American guitarist Skip McDonald, Adrian Utley (Portishead), Stuart Fisher (who has worked with Courtney Love), and members of psychedelic hippie heroes Ozric Tentacles. Then there’s Jamaican singer Dennis Wint, who Harper met in the Somerset town of Frome, where he lives and works.

        Street Clan is even more wild, frantic and unexpected than Punt, with sections that work brilliantly and tracks where Ethiopian vocals are surrounded by a blitz of thrash guitar and percussion, results ranging from exhilarating to messy. The best tracks come towards the end, where the emphasis shifts from the clash of African vocals with full-tilt Western guitars, through to more conventional dub reggae. There’s still an African edge to Teenage Lion and Broken Heart, thanks to the vocal work from Zewditu Tadesse; but Wint dominates the songs with an energy and style that makes him sound like an unlikely male answer to early Patti Smith.

      There's a huge sea change between Invisible System's debut and this sophomore outing. Where the first was definitely based around Ethiopian music, this is a much more amorphous and adventurous beast. If it needs to be defined, it's a rock -- maybe even post-rock -- album. Ethiopia is still there, and some of the music was recorded in Addis Ababa. But many of the sounds were made in England using a truly staggering range of musicians, and there's a powerful Jamaican influence at work here, too. If you need an analogy, think of the work of Adrian Sherwood, or even some PiL (in fact, "Mutant Miners" sounds like it could be have been smuggled off some fantastical PiL album). This is world music in the sense that it was made by people from different parts of the globe coming together, but its roots are in the here and now rather than in any tradition. It's challenging, adventurous, and heavily textured; the tracks were recorded live and later chopped up and mixed, although you'd never notice the joints. It might prove to be one of the finds of 2011, a real sonic adventure that speaks highly of Dan Harper, the man behind it all.

review by Chris Nickson





01 Tizita (feat. Portishead Adrian Utley, Ethiopiques)                                                       4:01  
02 Ambassel (feat. Mimi + band (after signed as Dub Colossus also))                          5:25
03 Zedanmer (feat. Eat Static, Ethiopiques)                                                       4:38
04 Bone Flaps (feat. Merv Pepler and Los Mutartis + Ethiopiques)                                3:51
05 Backyard (feat. Skip McDonald (On U Sound, LIttle Axe, Sugar Hill Gang), Dennis… 4:47
06 Skunk Funk (feat. The Ullulators)                                                                                     4:30
07 Opidervtu (feat. Eat Static, Ethiopiques)                                                                       4:26
08 Womens Love (feat. Ozric Tentacles, Rythmites, Ethiopiques, Sydney Salmon)   6:15
09 Mutant Miners (feat. Merv Pepler, Los Mutartis, Ethiopiques)               6:08
10 Live Up To Love (feat. Hilaire Chabby (Baba Maal), Dennis Wint, Ethiopiques)     3:15
11 Men Dont Cry (feat. Eat Static, Dennis Wint, Ethiopqiues)                                       2:46
12 Oumabetty (feat. Jonny / Akrilu (Mamoud Ahmed))                                                   3:13
13 Teenage Lion (feat. Ryhthmites Flash, Ethiopques,)                                               6:08
14 Broken Heart (feat. Dennis Wint, Leyikun Ethiopia)                                               3:33
15 Katabo (feat. Merv Pepler, Dennis Wint)                                                               3:45
16 Naturalisation (feat. Dennis Wint, Joie Hinton)                                                       7:57
17 Rapture (feat. Merv Pepler, Dennis Wint)                                                               3:20





Thursday, April 28, 2016

Dub Colossus - A town called Addis [2006] [ethiopia]



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       This project brings together an extraordinary but little known African musical heritage, a labour of love recording in a makeshift studio in down-town Addis Ababa and then a journey back to Real World to capture for the first time ever in the UK some of Ethiopia's finest performers.








       This project is the vision of Dub Colossus - Dubulah - aka Nick Page. Composer, guitarist, bass player and programmer Nick started his music career with Michael Riley (Steel Pulse) and in 1990 formed Transglobal Underground with Tim and Hammi, produced-wrote-played six albums before leaving in 1997 to form Temple of Sound with Neil Sparkes.








       Ethiopian music is the hidden gem of Africa. At the end of the Sixties and the early Seventies, Ethiopia was in the dying years of the imperial decline of Haile Selassie and the early years of a brutally repressive junta led by Mengistu. Within the confines of this stifling and constrictive environment there flowered some astonishing music. At times showing Fela Kuti's influences, in the big band sax flavour and other times a different take on regional music, this is a music that is accessible to all and has been championed by the likes of Robert Plant, Brian Eno and Elvis Costello. The style of contemporary Ethiopia music captured by Dub Colossus ranges from dreamy blues, hypnotic grooves, jazz piano and driving funk brass.





       "A Town Called Addis" was inspired by meeting , writing and working with singers and musicians in Addis Ababa in August 2006, and is a collaboration between Dub Colossus (Nick Page) and these amazing musicians covering Azmari and traditional styles as well as the popular singing styles of the 60s and 70s. It seeks to combine the golden years of ethiopique beats (popular again thanks to the release of the critically acclaimed 'Ethiopique' compliation ) and ethiojazz with the dub reggae styles of early 70s reggae groups like the Abyssinians, Mighty Diamonds and so on. along with a hint of Sun Ra..." (Dub Colossus/aka Nick Page)



       The first sessions took place in a breeze block hut under corrugated iron roof bombarded by the sounds of the rainy season high up on the mountain plateau where Addis is built. "...the sound of children playing, dogs barking and women washing all permeate the sessions and help the flavour of the record, albeit as ambient smoke.....Although a howling cat chasing a rat under the roof destroyed one vocal take completely...!"



       We brought these unique urban field recordings home to Real World to complete the picture. In March 2008 we invited a group of outstanding performers from Addis to travel to the UK. Some of these artists are unknown talents who have never traveled outside of their country before now, while others such as singer Sintayehu 'Mimi' Zenebe (Addis Ababa night club owner and know as the Ethiopian Edith Piaf ) and master saxophonist Feleke Hailu (a classical composer, lecturer and head of music at the Yared Music School and part of a dynastic tradition that stretches back far beyond the classic hits his father arranged for Mahmoud Ahmad in the late 1960s) have a huge reputation. They are joined by Teremag Weretow who, with his plaintive voice, playing his messenqo ( one-string fiddle) is a youthful carrier of an ancient tradition; extraordinary pianist Samuel Yirga is an exciting new discovery - a young prodigy of classical and Ethiojazz and finally the glamourous star Tsedenia Gebremarkos, winner of a Kora award as the best female singer in East Africa in 2004,








       From the most primitive recording context to one of the best in the world, this project is an audio journey - and discovery of one of the most alluring, funky and seductive genres of African music.




01. Dub Colossus - Azmari Dub (5:05)
02. Dub Colossus - Entoto Dub (5:55)
03. Dub Colossus - Tazeb Kush (5:52)
04. Dub Colossus - Shegye Shegitu (Blue Nile Mix) (3:54)
05. Dub Colossus - Shegye Shegitu (One Drop mix) (4:49)
06. Dub Colossus - Yeka Sub City Rockers (5:04)
07. Dub Colossus - Shem City Steppers (5:28)
08. Dub Colossus - Tizita Dub (7:38)
09. Dub Colossus - Black Rose (4:06)
10. Dub Colossus - Neh Yelginete (5:40)
11. Dub Colossus - Ophir Dub (4:40)
12. Dub Colossus - Sima Edy (4:40)
13. Dub Colossus - Mercato Music (5:47)
14. Dub Colossus - Ambassel (4:40)
15. Dub Colossus - Ambassel In Box (5:47)



Sunday, November 1, 2015

Ester Rada - Life Happens ЕP [2012] [israel / ethiopia]



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Ester Rada - Life Happens (Official Video)





       Ester Rada is an Israeli actress and singer.

      Ester Rada’s cross-cultural sound is a deep reflection of the Israeli born Ethiopian’s heritage. Growing up in a highly religious Jewish family in more than modest conditions in Israel, gave Rada the drive to change her way of life and fulfill her dream of creating music.





      Ester recently released her debut album "Ester Rada", after releasing her acclaimed first self-written and composed solo EP called "Life Happens", which was produced by Israeli producers Kuti (Kutiman/Thru-You) and Sabbo (Soulico), at the beginning of 2013. 

      Rada gained worldwide popularity on a tour across Europe, the United States and Canada. She has recently performed at the Glastonbury Festival. She performed at the opening act of Alicia Keys' concert in Israel. Rada's music video "Life Happens" has been broadcast on MTV France, East Europe, and Israel, as well as on VH1 UK. Rada credits Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin as her musical influences, alongside Eryka Badu, Lauryn Hill and Jill Scott.







         Rada started her acting career in musical theater, and won an award for her role in Habima Theatre's The Troupe. In 2007 she played a major role in the TV serial "Deus". In the same year she also acted in Habima's play Sdakim bebeton. Filmography and TV Appearances: Still Walking Zrubavel Kirot The Special. Yes's series New York.



    In the end of 2012 Ester Rada released an EP entitled "Life Happens" with four of her songs. The album was positively received by critics, who describe her music as "cross-cultural sound that is a deep reflection of the Israeli born Ethiopian's heritage" and "graceful composition of Ethio-Jazz, funk, soul and r&b, with mixed undertones of black grooves"




1. Ester Rada - Life Happens (3:56)
2. Ester Rada - Monsters (4:53)
3. Ester Rada - Anything from you (4:52)
4. Ester Rada - Could it be (3:17)

         + BONUS TRACK   

5. Ester Rada - Life Happens (Shimi Sonic remix) (4:17)




Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Nazarenes - Rock Firm [2008] [ethiopia]



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       The Nazarenes sound is a fresh and vibrant blend of Roots-Reggae with an array of melodies and savvy arrangements that are complimented by haunting vocals. The music is both spiritual and inspirational and carries a much-needed message of love, hope, pride and respect for one another.






       Their debut album "Orit" was released in 2001 by Insteel Sounds and the much anticipated second album "SONGS OF LIFE"  was released in Europe (autumn  2004) by Heartbeat/Rounder Europe. The album is also released in USA & Canada (summer 2005) by Heartbeat label.  

     Their music is a unique and powerful addition to the ever expanding Diaspora of reggae music as well as a stunning tribute to the talent and dedication of this duo.  

       Since the release of, Orit, Nazarenes has built up a solid reputation throughout Europe and have consequently developed large and devoted followings of fans.  The duo is especially well known in Europe and their unique talent has also gained them recognition in England, Canada, U.S.A. and the world wide reggae scene.  After the release of their first album, Nazarenes have been touring and performing at many of the larger festivals in Europe, such as, Summer Jam (Germany), Roskilde festival (Denmark), Oslo world music festival (Norway), Rototom Sunsplash (Italy) and Uppsala reggae festival (Sweden), to name few. Their powerful stage presence and extraordinary musical arrangements has won them the title of being one of "The most excellent, hypnotic and unforgettable" live act of every festival and concert in which they perform.






        Growing up in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in the mid 70´s among a large close-knit family, the two brother’s love of reggae distinguished them from their peers. Reggae was considered underground, not mainstream, and was not featured on the radio or played in the cafés and clubs that dotted the city.  Despite the scarcity and the lack of due promotion, the hypnotic rhythms and conscious message of the music engulfed the heart and soul of the entire Tewolde family. It was around this time that 12-year-old Medhane received his first guitar and began to scratch. The course of the Nazarenes was set.
       Over the years many precious experiences have been gained. In the 80´s, Medhane and Noah played with various bands in Europe (mainly Sweden and Germany) with Medhane on guitars and lead vocals and Noah on bass and back vocal.
       In the 90´s, Medhane teamed up with some well known Jamaican Reggae bands including Iqulah, Culture Knox and Mamma Booker (Bob Marley´s Mother!) for a European and African tour. 





       At this time, Noah took up lead singing and in 1992 he was discovered in Gothenburg, Sweden.  A solo record deal with Virgin Records followed along with the release of three singles, one of which became a big hit in Sweden. In 1994 Noah´s debut album was released through Virgin Records under the name Anbessa.
       In 1996, Medhane and Noah reunited their forces and engaged on a new venture, which encompassed their own style and vibe as well as their spiritual and conscious views of life. 
      The culmination of this partnership is the phenomenal Nazarenes, musical pioneers that are going forward to blaze a trail for a music that they have made their own. 







01 - Solid As A Rock 
02 - Same Shit 
03 - Don't Let Me Down 
04 - Roots 
05 - Let's Chill Down 
06 - Walking In The Rain 
07 - Crash Dem Wid Love 
08 - I Wanna Shout Loud 
09 - Your Time Is Up 
10 - Marvellous 
11 - Our World 
12 - We Stand Firm 
13 - Jungle


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Muluken Melesse - The Great Unknown Muluken Melesse [ethiopia]


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       Muluken Melesse was born in 1954 in northern Ethiopia's province of Gojjam. After wandering extensively with his uncle, at the age of six they settled in Addis Ababa. The phenomenally precocious Muluken Melesse was just 12 when he began his singing career in 1966 at the Patric Lumuba night club. Like many vocalists of the period, he started off with the different police bands, and went on to sing with the first non-institutional groups of those founded by nightclub owners (Blue Nile Band, Zula Band, Venus Band, Equators Band...)

       Hedech Alu was the first song he recorded on vinyl at the beginning of 1972.

       In a very short period of time his popularity soared sky-high. Backed by the Dahlak, Roha (as Ibex), and Ethio-Stars bands, Muluken has recorded from 1972 till 1976 a series of successful casettes and records and in 1976 what was to be his last hit, Ney Ney Wodaje.

      Muluken abandoned his career during the 80's to devote himself and his voice to the Pentacostal church and continued singing gospels occasionally. The magic was gone. Wishful thinking among his fans regularly gives rise to rumors of a comeback, but none has materialized ...

    When Muluken Melesse came to the scene, he brought the Balager Sound, the "Ethiopian Roots Music" of the rural villages in Ethiopia to cosmopolitan Addis Ababa , reversing the trend of simply aping the West.

   Muluken captured that essence and the entire feel of the "Real Ethiopia". In Ethiopia's poetic tradition there are the sam-ennawarq (wax and gold) versessongs that are apparently about love, but subliminally they level serious criticism at the rulers and political or social conditions.

Sam-ennawarq is open to so much interpretation that listeners enjoy arguing all day for their exact meaning.


An example from Muluken's lyrics:

   Tenesh Kelbe Lay   

Please, leave my heart alone. 
Why don't you leave my heart alone? 
I want to be free like other human beings. 
Something which I don't understand. 
What did I see that stung me so?
I have seen beyond beauties, 
but I have been stung still by your love. 
Your love disarms me. 
Everything looks so nice on her.
Her beauty is misleading. 
I love the way you dance seksta,
shaking your lovely neck and shoulders. 
Saddle my horse, 
so that I can ride to her 
and drink deep of the feast of her love.




01. Muluken Mellesse - Tenesh Kelibe Laye (4:24)
02. Muluken Mellesse - Ere Indet Nesh Gedawo (4:12)
03. Muluken Mellesse - Embwa Belew (3:55)
04. Muluken Mellesse - Wetete Mare (3:32)
05. Muluken Mellesse - Yeminjar Shega (2:31)
06. Muluken Mellesse - Hedech Alu (5:13)
08. Muluken Mellesse - Gelayewa Neyney (8:21)
09. Muluken Mellesse - Meche Amakerechign (4:34)
10. Muluken Mellesse - Djemeregne (7:29)