Thursday, April 6, Ethio-American singer Meklit Hadero will be performing music from her much anticipated new album, When the People Move, the Music Moves Too. You might know Meklit as a TED senior fellow whose TED Talk, “The Unexpected Beauty of Everyday Sounds,” has been viewed more than 1 million times, or as the cofounder of The Nile Project, a sublime coalition of artists from the 11 countries along the Nile. On top of this, this self-identified cultural instigator is also making her mark on the legacy of Ethio-jazz in the footsteps of the great Mulatu Astatke (the godfather of this genre), who urged Meklit to find her role in the music’s history. “For me, I found my contribution through my American story, one that centers on hybridity, immigration, and finding a beloved home inside of two cultures,” says Hadero. Six years after her talk with Astatke, she’s debuting her new sound at Lincoln Center.
After a sneak-peek listen to the album, I can attest that Hadero’s brand of jazz is stunning. Her pentatonic melodies and funky time signatures conjure up both the American Delta and the East African highlands. The key to my heart is a robust horn section, and this music gives you that and then some (like a delicious string section).
Why You Should Go: To sway to the uplifting, deep music and have your ears opened up to a new take on an American soundtrack.
David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center
61 West 62nd Street (between Columbus Avenue and Broadway)
April 6, 7:30 p.m.
A nightcap at Hudson Common will keep you jazzed up after an incredible show at Lincoln Center: