Ethiopia: Danayit Mekbib Dancing With Ali Birra At Addis Concert

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Danayit Mekbib Dancing With Ali Birra At Addis Concert 2  Ethiopia

She did it again. Danayit Mekbib, a Kana TV Host of her program #Time, once again danced with the legendary Singer and song-writer, Ali Mohammed Birr, popularly known as Ali Birra on Addis Concert 2 held last week on Saturday, June 15 at the Millennium Hall.

As most of us are showing her on her TV show, she has come up with a unique program format and presentation, too. But, what most people adore her is not also for her program format, but also for the reason that she so cheerful.

Danayit or Danishoo as we love to call her was discovered on Instagram. She was a popular self-made sensation with a huge fan base. When we approached her to be the host of #time, she took the challenge and shook the city. Danayit's super charismatic and jovial personality has garnered her a huge fan base on-air and online. Danayit Mekbib was born in Ethiopia. In a town called Adigrat in the Northern Tigray region. She grew up Addis Ababa and took some textile designing courses at Bahirdar University. Later on, she continued her education, graduating in marketing management from Unity University. She loves trying new things and is a fashion aficionad.

Ali Birra is a living Oromo legend — singer, composer, and poet. In 2013, he celebrates 50 years on the music scene of his native Ethiopia. He has sacrificed much for his music; a nationalist and supporter of Oromo music, he has been imprisoned countless times and, also, wrongfully reported dead on more than one occasion, as Andreas Hansen reports.

During his career, Ali has not only been jailed dozens of times; he has also been reported dead more than once. First in the mid-70s, when the authorities in his home town of Dire Dawa told Ali’s father to travel to Addis Ababa to collect the corpse of his son. He found Ali asleep in the hotel, rather hungover from the previous night’s performance, but still very much alive. In the past decade, the rumors of Ali’s death surfaced again and in 2009 he was announced dead on Wikipedia. In late 2012 in Addis Ababa, Andreas Hansen met Ali – still alive and thriving – who told him that the untimely obituaries and imprisonments are the price he has had to pay for playing Oromo music and promoting Oromo culture.

A Story Untold

The past decade has seen an implausible but well-deserved rediscovery of the astonishing Ethiopian music of the 1960’s and 1970’s. However, the majority of the attention has been given to Amharic music from Addis. One important legacy that has until now been left largely untold is the music of the Oromo’s.
For several decades from the mid-60s and onwards, Ali Birra was the most prominent representative of modern Oromo music. He was part of a golden generation of Ethiopian musicians, performing with the greatest artists and orchestras of the time; but being Oromo he was always an outsider in relation to the Amharic musicians of his time.

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