SHOP ALL RECORD STORE DAY EXCLUSIVES AT 8PM HERE

Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru - Souvenirs

$30.00
Format
Description

“Crows of the sky, please tell me What is found above the clouds? Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru, “Tell Me”.

The first vocal album by beloved Ethiopian nun, composer, and pianist Emahoy Tsege Mariam Gebru - profound and deeply moving home cassette recordings made amidst political upheaval and turmoil. These are songs of wisdom, loss, mourning, and exile, sung directly into a boombox and accompanied by Emahoy’s unmistakable piano. Though written and recorded while still living at her family’s home in Addis Ababa, Emahoy sings of the heartache of being far from home, a reflection on the 1974 revolution and Red Terror in Ethiopia, and a presentiment of her future exile in Jerusalem.

In the 21st century, Emahoy has become known worldwide for her utterly unique melodic and rhythmic style. Commonly misinterpreted as “jazzy” or “honky tonk,” Emahoy’s music actually comes from a deep engagement with the Western classical tradition, mixed with her background in Ethiopian traditional and Orthodox music.

These songs, recorded between 1977-1985, are different from anything previously released by the artist. Rich with the sound of birds outside the window, the creak of the piano bench, the thump of Emahoy’s finger on the record button, they create a sense of place, of being near the artist while she records.

Emahoy’s lyrics, sung in Amharic, are poetic and heavy with the weight of exile. “When I looked out / past the clouds / I couldn’t see my country’s sky / Have I really gone so far?” she asks in “Is It Sunny or Cloudy in the Land You Live?” Her vocals are delicate and heartfelt, tracing the melodic contours of her piano on songs like “Where Is the Highway of Thought?”

“Tenkou! Why Feel Sorry?,” a career highlight that closes out her self-titled Mississippi album (MRP-099), is revisited here with vocals. Originally composed for her niece, Tenkou, the lyrics clarify the song title we’ve wondered about for so many years. “Don’t cry / Childhood won’t come back / Let it go with love.”

Emahoy dreamt of releasing this music to a larger audience before her passing in March of 2023. We are proud to release this music, in collaboration with her family, now, in what would have been her 100th year.

Tracklisting

1. Clouds Moving on the Sky

2. Ready to Leave

3. Is It Sunny or Cloudy in the

4. Tenkou! Why Feel Sorry?

5. Ethiopia My Motherland

6. Where Is the Highway of Thought?

7. Don’t Forget Your Country

8. Like the Sun Shines on Meadows

Release Info

Release Date: 23rd February 2024
Format: LP, CD
Label: Mississippi Records

Shipping & Delivery

Drift gladly ship all items Worldwide using Royal Mail Tracked®, FedEx and DHL services. There is a shipping calculator available in the basket. Read More

Click & Collect

Available on all orders from Drift. Select the Click & Collect option during the checkout process. Read More.

UK Free Shipping

We offer free delivery on orders of £85 and over, sent within mainland UK. To qualify for free delivery, your order will be sent as one dispatch. Read More.

Global Shipping & Tax

If you are based outside the UK and EU, all prices will appear without tax at the checkout. Drift is IOSS registered and collects tax on all EU orders at point of purchase. Read More.
   
"A remarkable archival release captures rare vocal performances that the esteemed nun, composer, and pianist recorded in the late 1970s and early ’80s amid political turmoil in Ethiopia."
9.0
 
                                 

EXPLORE Curated music collections, latest recommendations; everything that you need to know!

👌 Your order qualifies for free shipping You are just $85 away from free UK shipping!

MUSIC A new homepage to help you find exactly what you're looking for...

Basket

👌 Your order qualifies for free shipping Spend $85 for free UK shipping
No more products available for purchase

Your basket is empty