Playing drum set with Todd Simon’s Ethio Cali Ensemble featuring Sydney-based vocalist Dereb Desalegn (aka Dereb The Ambassador) live at The Blue Whale on Sunday, July 28. This show is an encore performance of Friday’s Grand Performances co-bill with University of Gnawa.
On the heels of a highly successful concert at Downtown Los Angeles’ Grand Performances, Ethio Cali returns to their favorite venue for a spirited night of Ethio and world jazz featuring accomplished Sydney-based vocalist and musician Dereb The Ambassador.
Tonight’s band features a who’s who in Los Angeles musical talent augmented by Ethiopian lyrics and new traditional material.
Todd Simon – trumpet, music director
Dereb Deselegn – vocals, massenqo
Kamasi Washington – tenor saxophone
Randal Fisher – tenor saxophone
Vardan Ovsepian, Mark de Clive-Lowe – piano
Damon Aaron – guitar
Patrick Bailey – bass guitar
Steve Haney – percussion
Te’Amir Sweeney – percussion
Dexter Story – drums
Ethio Cali is a Los Angeles-based Ethio-Jazz ensemble, led by trumpeter, arranger, and composer Todd Simon. The ensemble’s sublime sound is inspired by the golden age of Ethiopian music of the 1960’s and 70’s, filtered through a lens that is uniquely Los Angeles. Acknowledging the diverse musical foundations of Ethio-Jazz, the ensemble also draws inspiration from the rhythmic and melodic textures of Sudan, Somalia, Ghana, and Colombia.
Dereb The Ambassador:
Born in Ethiopia, Dereb grew up amongst a family of musicians, completely immersed in his home country’s rich melange of sounds, rhythms and musical styles. Dereb’s extraordinary vocal talent was recognised early on, with his first performances at the age of 4. With parent mentors by his side he went from strength to strength, adding a Masenqo, the single-stringed Ethiopian spike fiddle, to his repertoire by the age of 10. By his teens he was drawing crowds in the bars of Addis Ababa and around Ethiopia.In 2003 Dereb recorded his first solo album ‘Korkorow Yalew’ from which the hit single ‘Wollo’, reached number one on the Ethiopian charts. Dereb has since toured in America, England, Asia, New Zealand and Australia where he currently resides.
2 sets: 9pm and 11pm