Sunday, December 7, 2008

The King of Ethiopian Music

In an earlier post I wrote of the brilliant Ethiopian singer Tilahun Gessesse, posted a couple of songs from a recent CD, and promised I'd make available some of his earlier Ethiopian recordings.

Back in the '80s I was loaned three of Gessesse's cassettes. I dubbed these onto 10" tape reels (that being the best means of preservation in that pre-digital era) and was unable to listen to them for twenty years, when I got hold of a reel-to-reel tape deck and was able to digitize two of them. The third has apparently been misplaced, and when I manage to track it down I will, of course, transfer it as well.

I present one of these recordings, Sebebena, which I believe was produced by Ambassel Music Shop in the early '80s. The original inlay card was missing, but the Ethiopian friend who loaned me the cassette transcribed the song titles for me. I believe the tunes are in Amharic and Oromo (Gessesse's parents were of both nationalities), and they pose quite an interesting contrast to the recordings I made available in my earlier post. Listen to them and understand why Tilahun Gessesse is considered ". . .a living legend, the pride of all Ethiopians, and the King of Ethiopian music":

Tilahun Gessesse - Wube Abeba

Tilahun Gessesse - Sebebena

Tilahun Gessesse - Shemunaye

Tilahun Gessesse - Nedegesh Naw

Tilahun Gessesse - Sherer Bay

Tilahun Gessesse - Mene Taragewalesh

Tilahun Gessesse - Yekerb Eruc Hono

Tilahun Gessesse - Mewdeden Lingeresh

Tilahun Gessesse - Mene Yeshalele

Tilahun Gessesse - Neyeleng


Neu Mejican said...

Love that Ethiopian music. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Thanks, I love that classic Ethiopian sound (and Tlahoun Gessesse in particular).

Anonymous said...

The legendary Tilahun passed away yesterday....farewell to the king!! R.I.P

Anonymous said...

What a golden voice god has given to Tilish. Imagine he was artist with great guitarist like Santana.
May god bless his soul.
I wish I belonged to his generation.

Palix said...

tigi said...

Teddy Afro's Tikur Sew Official Music Video released

alem said...


local said...

There is no doubt that there are very talented Ethiopian music artists that have contributed a lot.

Eyob Alemu said...

RIP. Tilahun Gessesse is an iconic Ethiopian artist. check this Tilahun Gessesse fan club on dedicated for this Ethiopian legend.