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Concerts & Events

Wednesday, April 24, 2024  ·  8:00 PM CDT


Psychedelic Roots from Addis Ababa

4544 N Lincoln Ave · · 773.728.6000

World Music Wednesdays

A weekly showcase of world music and dance featuring the best local and touring talent! Most shows are Wednesday nights at 8:00 PM.

Most World Music Wednesday concerts are free with a $10 suggested donation. TO GUARANTEE YOUR ENTRY MAKE YOUR RESERVATIONS IN ADVANCE EITHER ONLINE OR BY CALLING THE BOX OFFICE AT 773.728.6000. Reservations unclaimed 10 minutes before showtime will be released to waiting patrons.

Beaming in from the sizzling Addis Ababa nightlife scene, this group shines an experimentalism based in the virtuosity of rooted traditions. With swirling masinko (one-stringed fiddle), wah-wah violin, bass krar grooves, the heavy riffs of goat skin kebero beats, and powerful mellismatic lead African diva vocals, QWANQWA keeps the people rapt in celebratory attention. QWANQWA's debut US tour of 54 concerts in Fall 2022 brought the poignant euphoric experience to storied jazz clubs, sticker slapped rock clubs, folk festivals, prestigious music institutions, street festivals, universities, and country opera houses, all the while unifying these audiences as they clap along "Music is Universal Language"

QWANQWA uncovers lesser known traditional sounds from East Africa regions of Ethiopia and beyond - a trance-like chant of the Eritrean tribe of Blen, a psychedelic Somalian cover, an extended Amhara wedding medley, a Mahmoud Ahmed sing-a-long. With Selamnesh Zemene, the Azmari diva powerhouse, at the helm, QWANQWA is a conversation of virtuosos through tight arrangements and extended experimental moments. The live show ranges from intimate to wild, from whispery conversations to full blown rock show, and it is hard to believe these psychedelic sounds are coming from traditional harps, one string fiddle, and violin. Driving, powerful, QWANQWA proves we are living during another Golden Age of Ethiopian music.