The legendary saxophonist, Getatchew Mekuria passed away



MARCH 14, 1935 – APRIL 4, 2016

Getatchew passed away today, 4 April 2016 at the age of 81.  Getatchew Mekuria  had a musical career of 68 years. He was a truely unique saxophone player. Born in the countryside of Ethiopia, he heard the saxophone on the radio at the age of 13 and went to Addis Abeba straight away. He wanted to play saxophone! And soon after that he got himself into the Municipality Band. Later he played in the Haile Selassie Orchestra’s, the National Theatre Orchestra and more.

Since 2004 he played regularly with The Ex. It was his choice after hearing us at one of our festivals. He recognized something in our music which reminded him of the early groups he was in, like the Fetan Band (Speed Band). He loved playing with us and for us it was also an incredible experience. He was always totally himself, full-on intense and dedicated. We played more than 100 concerts and made two beautiful albums together.

The last few years, his health was not very good. He couldn’t really go on tour anymore. As a kind of farewell concert for his fans, we organized a big event in the National Theatre in Addis Abeba. He got lots of attention and respect that night: 1500 people in the audience, three TV stations and a legendary concert. Getatchew was playing while sitting on a chair, but his playing was stronger than ever.

His whole life was music. With his unique sound and approach he leaves behind an eternal inspiration!

We will miss him.
The Ex. 

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Posted by on April 4, 2016. Filed under NEWS. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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