This post is completely taken from extraordinary new blog dedicated to an older african music.
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Here is another reel of radio recordings from the horn of Africa. This reel was compiled by Ato Girma Zande, the music librarian of Radio Ethiopia back in the late 1960s (my guess is 1966-67). As you have surely read in the Ethiopiques liner notes (essential reading on Ethiopian music), the 1960s were a decade of musical ferment in Ethiopia. A decade of musical innovation and flux, foreshadowing the prolific early 1970s, the 'Golden Era' of Ethiopian popular music that has become a musical benchmark--akin to 1930s Harlem or 1980s Kingston--known to music lovers throughout the world.
This reel features five tracks by Bezunesh Bekele, including a 'traditional' version of 'Ere Mela Mela' as well as a live recording, three short and wonderful tracks by Bahta Gebrehiwot, three by Tilahoun Gessesse, the greatest Ethiopian singer of the Golden Age, and four lovely cuts by Menelik Wessenachew. These singers are accompanied by the great orchestras of the decade, the Ras Band, the Imperial Bodyguard Orchestra and the Haile Selassie Orchestra. The reel starts with four tracks of 'traditional' music, featuring, in particular, two lovely songs from Tigre and Shoa province.
Bezunesh Bekele - Hizb le Hizb
I recorded these tracks straight from the master reel to CD. This is an old reel and some of the tracks are a little wobbly. I have left the tracks in the order that Ato Zande dubbed them and I have not fiddled with the sound, no noise reduction, filtering, or eq.
Ethiopian Popular and Folk Music (Tracks prepared by Ato Girma Zande, Music Librarian, Radio Ethiopia)
I don't think any of these tracks are on the many reissues of classic Ethiopian music that have been released in the last twenty years. Don't hesitate to point out releases that I may have missed or to share what you know about these recordings.
The first picture is taken from a Menelik Wessanachew record sleeve and the second from a Bahta Gibrehewot sleeve. Enjoy.
Bezunesh Bekele - 02 - Era Mela Mela (3:38)
Uncredited - 03 - Mandjar (from Shoa Province) (3:21)
Uncredited - 04 - Temesgen (from Tigre) (5:45)
Bahta Gibre-Hewot with Ras Band - 05 - Anchem Indela (3:33)
Bahta Gibre-Hewot with Ras Band - 06 - Tar New (1:17)
Bahta Gibre-Hewot with Ras Band - 07 - Ine Nenj Woy Monj (2:50)
Bahta Gibre-Hewot with Ras Band - 08 - Ene Metch Alkuna (2:22)
Bezunesh Bekele & Imperial Body Guard Orchestra - 09 - Ere Keyete Meta (2:58)
Bezunesh Bekele & Imperial Body Guard Orchestra - 10 - Ante Temeta Ene (live) (2:28)
Bezunesh Bekele & Imperial Body Guard Orchestra - 11 - Yaleb Lay Esat (5:59)
Bezunesh Bekele & Imperial Body Guard Orchestra - 12 - Kante Gara Lehun (2:25)
Telahun Gessesse - 13 - Satwadenj Wodeyet (4:18)
Telahun Gessesse - 14 - Ere Min Yeshalengal (2:22)
Telahun Gessesse - 15 - Feker Lebichaye (4:10)
Menelik Wossenachew & Haile Selassie Orchestra - 16 - Yayne Alem (3:41)
Menelik Wossenachew & Haile Selassie Orchestra - 17 - Tez Teyengalesh (3:55)
Menelik Wossenachew & Haile Selassie Orchestra - 18 - Almaz Eyasebbhush (4:40)
Menelik Wossenachew & Haile Selassie Orchestra - 19 - Yehagre Tezeta (2:23)