Awesome Tapes from Africa’s Brian Shimkovitz has done a brilliant job over the past seven years or so of bringing new life to legendary artists whose genre-shifting music has often been lost in the sea of modern sounds. One of these prolific musicians is Ethiopian Hailu Mergia, the keyboard and accordion master who along with Addis Ababa band, Walias Band, released huge Afro-Funk hits throughout the 70’s through to the early 1990’s.
Initially, a humble hotel house band in Addis Ababa, the band preceded to tour the States, with Hailu pegging solo cassette tapes via local taxis before releasing their unique sound in France in the late 1990’s. Tonight,
Tonight, Camden’s Jazz Café and The Wire welcome a musical pioneer to the stage as we thank Shimkovitz for bringing new light to the funky jazz hero of Addis Ababa.
To get you into tonight’s mood, have a listen to (and watch) our video playlist exploring the sound of one of Africa’s most influential musicians…