bryn listens : emahoy tsegué-maryam guèbrou

Emahoy Maryam

I've enjoyed this particular recording (from the album Ethiopiques, vol. 21: Emahoy) for a long time. It's been fitting for me this week, with the fall air, some mellow moments.

Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guèbrou has an incredible story: born in Ethiopia in 1923 to a prominent family; studied in boarding school in Switzerland where she first learned piano and violin; returned to Addis Ababa only to have her family taken captive as prisoners of war by Italy during Mussolini's invasion; and later at 19 she joined a monastery and became a nun. She encountered numerous obstacles in her steady pursuit of music but began recording albums by 1967 at age 44. Eventually, she left to settle permanently in Israel, to escape the Ethiopian government's threats to her religious freedom. Whew. And through it all, her music. Enjoy and happy weekend!

(*Thanks Charlie for the always-good music tips.)

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