Abate Berihun & Addis Ken Project

The symbolically named project Addis Ken, which translates from Amharic as “New Day”, was formed in 2018 around Ethiopian singer and saxophonist Abate Berihun. A graduate of the Addis Ababa University School of Music and a player who has accompanied Ethiopian legends such as Mulatu Astatke and Mahmoud Ahmed.

Abate's bandmate and co-frontman in the Addis Ken project is the acclaimed pianist and composer Roy Mor (also Anat Cohen, trumpeter Avishai Cohen, Jazzmeia Horn, Esperanza Spalding, incidentally brother of Omri Mor, known from the line-up of bassist Avishai Cohen). Roy has had a rather turbulent life. He flirted with acting. At university, in addition to studying music, he earned a degree in philosophy. He served in the army as a paratrooper. Due to his uncertain career as a musician, he left a well-paid job as a programmer at Microsoft and tried to break through by playing in New York clubs. As a pianist, he has developed a distinctive style by absorbing and blending the techniques of classical music, hard bop and West African styles, which he refers to with exaggeration as the “biblical sound”. He also presented it in the Czech Republic as part of the International Jazz Piano Festival 2022.

Roy Mor described the concept of the Addis Ken project vividly: “It is actually a link between the ancient traditions of Ethiopian Jews and the approach of a modern jazz ensemble. We have incorporated a sense of musical adventure, rich harmonies, afrobeat and also blues that will grab you by the heart with its honesty.”

© 2024 GoOut, s.r.o., Czechia