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This is a cassette of Dur Dur,1 a group from Somalia which was very popular in the 1980’s. When I first listened to it I was amazed by the sound which resembled very much 1970’s funk music. John at Likembe writes about similar experiences. He presents also a lot of more information about Dur Dur in a another posting.2

Cover of cassette ‘Africa’ from Dur Dur

Cover of cassette ‘Africa’ from Dur Dur

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  1. I bought the cassette on my first trip to Ethiopia in 1993 in Addis Ababa. And this is also first complete cassette, I managed to upload. []
  2. An additional source of information about Somali popular music is the fascinating article The Light & Sound Of Mogadishu by Matthew LaVoie at VOA. []

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This blog is the continuation of a small web project for the presentation of the relatively unknown popular music of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti and Somalia. I had put some songs on that site which were in the RealAudio format. As a beginning of this new blog I will present these songs now in MP3 fomat.

Afar Music

Two young Afar women in traditional clothes from Tadjoura.

The Afar are one of the two main ethnic groups of Djibouti, but there are also Afar in Ethiopia and Eritrea. For a long time the center of Afar popular music was the town Tadjoura (Tagorre in the Afar language) on the Red Sea cost of northern Djibouti, because most Afar singers come from that town.

Fatouma Mansour

Fatouma Mansour is an Afar singer from Djibouti. I took the first song from a cassette I bought 1995 in Assayta, which was the capital of the Afar region of Ethiopia at that time1. The cassette is just a copy with the names Abdallah Lee2 and Fatu3 written in Amharic on the cover. Since there is no additional information on the cover the title of the song remains unkown to me.

Song from Fatouma Mansour

Abdallah Lee & Medina Habib

The second song is from Abdallah Lee (vocal & guitar) and another female singer, Medina Habib. This song is from a cassette I bought 1995 in Djibouti. As the cassette metioned above, this one is also only a copy with no information except the first names of the two interprets.

Song from Abdallah Lee & Medina

Tadjoura, Dec. 2001

  1. Today there is a new capital Samara, which was build from scratcht. []
  2. Maybe the most important Afar singer who died nearly two years ago. []
  3. Her full name is Fatouma Mansour []

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