Blog August 17, 2017
Win Tickets to See Ethiopian Legends Mahmoud Ahmed and Hailu Mergia
This is gonna be a good one, folks. Two legends of Ethiopian music, Mahmoud Ahmed and Hailu Mergia, are playing Town Hall in Manhattan together, and Afropop, along with our friends at the World Music Institute and le Poisson Rouge, is giving away two tickets to the Sept. 15 performance. To enter to win tickets, simply email info@afropop.org, with the subject line “Ethiopia at Town Hall.” Win or lose, see if you can make it. Not only is it going to be a special night of music, but before the show, Afropop's own Banning Eyre is going to moderate a Q&A with Francis Falceto, the musicologist and producer behind the famous Éthiopiques compilations. There are 30 albums in the Éthiopiques series at this point and at least four of them showcase the work of Mahmoud Ahmed. The singer's dynamic music sits at the intersection of traditional Amharic music with pop and jazz. I saw him a few years ago at Pioneer Works and his voice is in great shape and his band was spot-on. Hailu Mergia has had an up-and-down path to the Town Hall stage. After leading one of Ethiopia's premiere jazz-funk bands in the '70s, Mergia moved to Washington, D.C., where he became a cab driver. But someone so good can't stay hidden for long. Listeners began finding his recordings with the Walias Band via Éthiopiques and Awesome Tapes from Africa. His album 1978, Wede Harer Guzo, was reissued last year and became a personal favorite. On Sept. 15, the two are heading to New York's Town Hall. Email us to try to win some tickets, or if you like to be sure of your spot, buy tickets here.