About the Grant

$17,000 to support This Was Made Here (MAP 2014)
$3,500 to general operating expenses for Meklit Hadero

About the Project

This Was Made Here is a new body of music currently being composed by singer, musician, and cultural activist Meklit Hadero. Born in Ethiopia, raised in Brooklyn and based for a decade in San Francisco, Ethiopian traditional songs, Jazz and the songwriter tradition are marks of Hadero's sonic homelands. Taking these core elements as foundational building blocks, she sonically explores the cultural re-imagination happening as part of the arrival of the Ethiopian Diaspora en masse to North America.

Working with rhythm, melody, the female chorus, approaches to poetry and lyric, as well as structural elements of composition, each song will highlight distinct cultural markers as jumping off points. Deeply inspired by Mulatu Astatke, the Godfather of Ethio-Jazz, the work builds upon the concepts pioneered by Astatke as part of the late 1960s and early 1970s Golden Age of Ethiopian music. At the same time, the music is steeped in 21st century North America, where deeply fluid immigrant generations are the norm. The work invites a closer look into the quandary of identity, recognizing the impossibility of answering the question, "What parts of you are Ethiopian and what parts of you are American?"

Related Websites

Fractured Atlas, Inc.

Meklit Hadero


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