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Mulatu Astatke
Sketches Of Ethiopia

JAZZ VILLAGE

An upful mixture of originals and traditional Ethiopian tunes charted for the big-band jazz and funk of the twelve-piece Step Ahead (John Edwards, Byron Wallen and co), with plenty of the great man's vibraphone.



Hailu Mergia And His Classical Instrument Shemonmuanay
A one-man-band evocation of the traditional accordion sound of his youth, adding a Moog, Rhodes and beat box. Light and fleet-footed, but questing and utterly heartfelt. Switched-on Ethiopiques from 1985.



Alemayehu Eshete
45s from 1967-74, blending Ethiopian groove and folk, soul and rock 'n' roll.



Mahmoud Ahmed
Almaz, the legendary Ethiopian singer's first LP, heavy and hypnotic, accompanied by the Ibex Band in 1973, on the eve of the break-up of Haile Sellassie's Imperial Body Guard Band.



Tsege Mariam Gebru Spielt Eigene Kompositionen
Utterly beautiful solo-piano explorations in African folk, spiritual meditation, Satie-esque classicism and Tatum-esque jazz, by this Ethiopian nun, on her 1963 LP debut in Germany. Stunning; highly recommended.



Ali Birra Ammalele
Imperial Bodyguard Band singer alongside Mahmoud Ahmed and Tilahun Gessesse who tuned his guitar like an oud. Oromo reasoning about love, existence and resistance, with a tasty Arab twang.



Getachew Degefu, Lemma Gebre Hiwot Wedding Songs
Originally released on Philips Ethiopia in 1973: a mixture of modern and traditional instruments mark the stages of an Amhara wedding. Hand-screened covers, with wedding photos and liner notes inside.



Mulatu Astatke Timeless
With jazz giants like Bennie Maupin, Azar Lawrence and Phil Ranelin, the great man on stage in Los Angeles in 2009, latinized in front of everyone.



Listen online



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Ethiopian Urban Modern Music Volume 2: Alemayehu Eshete
Deadly killers drawn for the vinyl from five CDs in the series.





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