Artist Profiles: Mahmoud Ahmed

Mahmoud Ahmed

Mahmoud Ahmed’s story is that of a kid raised in the streets of Addis-Ababa who began as a shoeshine boy before becoming one of his country’s leading stars and the person who opened Ethiopia’s musical doors to the Western world.

The ten tracks of his album Live in Paris, recorded at the Theatre de la Ville, feature music at the crossroads of Afro-beat, Latin swing and oriental arabesques. However, it is Ahmed?s astonishingly rich, original and powerful vocals that are the true star of the show. In a field of great performers, no other artist captures the spirit of Ethiopian song like Mahmoud Ahmed.

Several of Mahmoud Ahmed’s recordings were reissued on CD under the Éthiopiques series: Volume 6, 7, 19 and 26.

Partial discography

Almaz, with Ibex Band (1973)
Alèmyé (1974)
Erè Mèla Mèla (1975)
Soul of Addis (Earthworks, 1997)
Slow Collections (Sounds of Abyssinia, 1998)
Live In Paris (Long Distance, 1998)
Yitbarek (Yene Production, 2003)
Tizita Vol. 1 (AIT Records, 2003)
Tizita Vol. 2 (AIT Records, 2003)


Ethiogroove: Mahmoud Ahmed & Either/Orchestra (EthioSonic, 2007)
Éthiopiques Live: Mahmoud Ahmed, Alemayehu Eshete & Badume’s Band (Innacor, 2009)

Author: Angel Romero

Angel Romero y Ruiz has been writing about world music music for many years. He founded the websites and Angel produced several TV specials for Metropolis (TVE) and co-produced “Musica NA”, a music show for Televisión Española (TVE) in Spain that featured an eclectic mix of world music, fusion, electronica, new age and contemporary classical music. Angel also produced and remastered world music albums, compilations and boxed sets for Alula Records, Ellipsis Arts, Music of the World.


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