Music

8 Contemporary Ethiopian Artists to Check Out

Featuring Skat Nati, Iri Di, Ethiopian Records, Kelela, Batisso and more.

East Africa's youth culture is currently exploding like never before. In Ethiopia, a country that has a long history of fusing traditional music with modern sound, young artists are breaking out just as they did in the 1970s, when Ethio-jazz staked its claim on the world stage.

From experimental electronica to pop and hip-hop, Ethiopian music is being recognised across the globe for making joyful noise. Artists in Addis Ababa strive to reach out to the wider world, as at the same time, those in foreign lands send their messages back to a home they grasp at, one that aches right the way through them.

Here are some tracks that span Ethiopian artists from Addis, artists who moved away at a young age and those whose parents took that journey to find a new home.

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News

‘Zelalem,’ An EP & Vintage Ethiopian Folk Mixtape From Producer Mikael Seifu

Ethiopian beatmaker Mikael Seifu shares his new EP 'Zelalem' and a 50-minute vintage Ethiopian folk mixtape.

Zelalem EP cover.

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Soundhunters: Ethiopian Producer Mikael Seifu's Interactive Lagos Documentary

Ethiopian electronic producer Mikael Seifu shares short Soundhunters film documenting his experience sampling the busy streets of Lagos.

Ethiopian Beatmaker Mikael Seifu Shares 'Brass'

Addis Ababa-based producer Mikael Seifu shares the slow-building 13-minute single "Brass," off his upcoming 'The Lost Drum Beat' release.

Ethiopian Beatmaker Mikael Seifu Shares 'The Lost Drum Beat'

Mikael Seifu blends off-beat UK garage beatwork with traditional Ethiopian folk sounds in his new single "The Lost Drum Beat"

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Okayafrica's Top 10 Tracks of 2014

We list our choices for the ten best African tracks to come out in 2014, including Young Fathers, Tony Allen, Ibeyi, Fantasma and more.