Emahoy Tzegue-Mariam Gebru's life is, as detailed in the informative booklet attached to the CD, is very unique, filled with tragedy, courage and devotion. All of this is reflected in the music heard in this surprising CD. She was sent as a child to Switzerland, where she studied violin and piano. She continued playing the piano when she returned to Ethiopia, and then continued her studies under a Polish teacher in Egypt. When she was prevented from studying music in Britain, she chose the life of a nun. Her musical tastes are first and foremost Beethoven, Strauss and Chopin, while she has heard and liked the early Ethiopian Pop of Tilahun Gessese, Hirut Bekele, Mahmud Ahmad and Bizunesh Bekele. She is influenced by the religious music of the Ethiopian church as well.
The result is an original sound. On the first track of the CD, she stays with two Ethiopian scales (Tizita and Bati), but with her approach they are given a new meaning, reminiscent of some early blues and Jazz piano.
The next 3 tracks have very little that is Ethiopian, and much that is European - paying tribute to her favorite composers, with her unique style.
From the fifth track to the end of the CD, it is a beautiful combination of all her musical influences. Her approach to composing is European - each note is planned, calculated, and written down. The Ethiopian touch is in the intervals ending the phrases, and in the rhythmic subtleties that lean to a 3/3 meter.
Throughout, her life's rich experience fills the music with sadness, tragedy and beauty. This is necessary music for all lovers of music - the experience of this music simply cannot be found anywhere else !