Hailu Mergia (ET)
A visionary figure in Ethiopian jazz
Throughout the 1960s and 70s, Hailu Mergia was a trendsetter with his band Walias Band, who recorded a number of compositions that have since become Ethio-jazz standards covered by countless international artists.
Over the years, Mergia revolutionised Ethiopian folk music by using moogs and synthesisers to bring the genre into the future. In 1981, he emigrated to the USA, which led to the dissolution of Walias Band, and Mergia started working as a cab driver.
In 2013, Awesome Tapes From Africa re-released the studio album Hailu Mergia and His Classical Instrument from 1985, which rekindled the myth of the golden age of Ethiopian music and put Mergia on the map for venues and festivals around the world.
Now, Mergia returns with his anticipated comeback album Lala Belu, released on Awesome Tapes From Africa, so do not miss out on a chance to experience this legend live in concert at Radar.
Hailu Lulessa Mergia (acc, org, rhodes, p), Fasil Wuhib (b), Ken Joseph (drm)