PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Singer Meklit Hadero Keeps Her Focus On Africa

Artist Meklit Hadero. (Courtesy of Meklithader.com)

Artist Meklit Hadero. (Courtesy of Meklithader.com)

Ethiopian-born musician Meklit Hadero has been blending the music of Ethiopia, her birth country, with the jazz of the US, where she lives now. And now she’s stepping it up– not only does she have a new group made up of other Ethiopia diaspora musicians , but she recently received a TED senior fellowship for something she calls “the Nile Project.” It would bring together musicians from countries on the Nile rivers, who would sail down the river on a boat, performing for onlookers on the banks.

Hadero tells Here & Now‘s Sacha Pfeiffer that she gets a range of reactions when she travels back to her native Ethiopia and performs.

“Some people come up to me and say you know we feel like you’re representing us in a way we’ve never been represented before… we’re proud of you,” she said. “Others say please sing more songs in [Ethiopia’s native language] Amharic. It’s about wanting to see themselves represented.”

Hardero has even received advice from famed Ethiopian musician Mulatu Astatke.

“What he said to me was, ‘You keep innovating. Make your sound. Maybe you’re still developing it, maybe you don’t know what it is yet, but it’s made of many things and you keep innovating,'” she said.

This interview originally aired in August, 2011.

Guest:

  • Meklit Hadero, musician

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Spotlight

Peter O’Dowd follows the route of Abraham Lincoln's funeral train 150 years ago, to look at modern-day race relations and Lincoln's legacy.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

May 26 4 Comments

Old-Fashioned Bell Helps 12-Year-Old Minnesota Boy Battle Cancer

David Gerfast and his family are fighting cancer with an old-fashioned ship captain's bell and high-tech proton beam radiation.

May 26 2 Comments

Just (Lobster) Roll With It: Variations On A Summer Tradition

In New England, lobster rolls are a summer tradition, but if you ask 100 chefs how to make one, you'll get 100 different answers.

May 25 Comment

Father’s Love For Fallen Son Inspires Memorial Day Tradition

In what has become an annual tradition, volunteers join Paul Monti, whose son died while serving in Afghanistan, to plant flags at each gravestone at the Massachusetts National Cemetery.

May 25 3 Comments

An Ordinary Day At Arlington National Cemetery

Official ceremonies will be held at Arlington National Cemetery to commemorate Memorial Day. Here & Now's Lisa Mullins has this report of an ordinary day at the cemetery.