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November 22, 2017

Spotlight: the Gift of Etsegenet Mekonnen


This week’s music spotlight belongs to an amazingly talented Ethiopian singer named Etsegent Mekonnen. While I was writing the last article, I had YouTube set on autoplay and listening to a mix of Ethiopian and American music. The article I was writing took me back to a time where life was no walk in the park. Feeling a bit whimsical, I decided to listen to some Ethiopian gospel music to lift my mood. I went back to writing only to stop clicking on the keyboard the minute I heard the very same music I used to listen to in the midst of my hardest time.

Except, this song was being sung in Amharic, which is my native language from Ethiopia. Hillsong was once my blanket that gave me warmth and my gabi that gave me comfort when the cold ways of the world had me mired in hopelessness and distress. Songs like Hosanna and Cornerstone gave me hope for a future even as my present was clouded by ennui and sadness. You can then imagine my surprise when I heard these same songs that I used to listen to in English being sung in my native language Amharic.

I stopped all that I was doing in order to listen to Etsegenet singing these songs that were once my beacon during my darkest nights. She had dual challenges, to sing songs live and translate these songs in Amharic is a rare feat. Etsegenet not only succeeded, she soared. These same songs I used to listen to bracketed by tears of sorrow, I listened to in the comforts of my home with tears of happiness. I encourage everyone to pause for a minute and reflect on life. We all have these journeys we go through; let’s take a break from politics and listen to each others songs.

In the process, listen to the song that is all about us. Check out Etsegenet Mekonnen below and make sure to subscribe to her YouTube page HERE or by clicking on the subscribe icon below the videos. You can find a link to her pages below the video. This is the beauty of music; we don’t have to understand the words nor understand each others dialects in order to hear our songs. May this message be heard by more and more people and may the music of Etsegenet and the prayer that she is singing reach many more. This I pray too, may God protect us and watch over us all. This is the gift of music, fitting Etsegenet means gift in Amharic. Poetically beautiful. #GiftOfEtsegenet

“Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.” ~ Psalms 30:5

If you are a singer or an artist who wants to be featured at our “Arts and Community CommUnity Space”, or have an event that you want us to spotlight that is related to art, music, dance or cultural events as a whole, send us an email at info@ghionjournal.com with your bio, event information and videos or audio of your work. The CommUnity Space is dedicated to highlighting business, arts and events that enhances the culture, diversity and resources available to the community at large. Find out more by clicking on the CommUnity tab in the menu where you will see drop downs for business section and arts and events. Thank you for checking in, make sure to follow our work on Facebook by clicking HERE or on the picture below.

 

Teodrose Fikre
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Teodrose Fikre

Founder at Ghion Journal
Teodrose Fikre is the editor and founder of the Ghion Journal. A published author and prolific writer, a once defense consultant was profoundly changed by a two year journey of hardship and struggle. Going from a life of of upper-middle class privilege to a time spent with the huddled masses taught Teodrose a valuable lesson in the essence of togetherness and the need to speak against injustice.

Originally from Ethiopia with roots to Atse Tewodros II, Teodrose is a former community organizer whose writing was incorporated into Barack Obama's South Carolina primary victory speech in 2008. He pivoted away from politics and decided to stand for collective justice after experiencing the reality of the forgotten masses. His writing defies conventional wisdom and challenges readers to look outside the constraints of labels and ideologies that serve to splinter the people. Teodrose uses his pen to give a voice to the voiceless and to speak truth to power.
Teodrose Fikre
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