Friday, December 14, 2007

Two records from the "Éthiopiques" series

v/a Éthiopiques 1: L'Age D'Or De La Musique Éthiopienne Moderne"
Gétatchèw Mèkurya Éthiopiques 14: Negus of Ethiopian Sax

Two more discs of Ethiopian jazz from the 1960s and 1970s to add to the collection, bought by my beloved and/or me at the concert where The Ex played with Gétatchèw Mèkurya in Amsterdam. Éthiopiques 1 features a lot more vocal stuff than I am used to from the series, while the Mèkurya disc is more typical of what I expect from the series (I know all about Les Éthiopiques, having previously acquired Éthiopiques 4 and a vinyl record compiling various Ethiopian jazz tracks).

One thing I am struck by with a lot of these tracks is how reggae-ish some of them sound, at least to my untrained ears. I wonder, could the proto-reggae musicians and producers in Jamaica have all taken their Rastafarianism seriously enough to take an interest in Ethiopian jazz? That would be mad.

Anyway, these records are great. You can't beat the Ethiopian jazz.

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