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Gigi



Though she composes songs in her native Amharic tongue, Ethiopian singing sensation Ejigayehu "Gigi" Shibabaw crafts music that speaks the universal language, reflecting myriad traditions absorbed from Africa, Asia, and the West. While informed by the vocal traditions of East Africa, Gigi's songcraft also incorporates elements of West and South African music, Indian classical music, hip hop, funk, dub reggae, jazz, Western pop, and plenty more to create an inimitable fusion that feels truly global.

While only in her mid-twenties, the young chanteuse has already been on the world stage for quite awhile. Upon reaching adulthood, she sought her fortune first in Nairobi, Kenya, and then in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia's capital), honing her singing and songwriting skills. After being cast in a French theater production, Gigi toured East and South Africa, and then France, before relocating to San Francisco, where she became popular among the local Ethiopian character.

On her self-titled Palm debut, Gigi assembled a truly remarkable cast of musical characters to assist her, including bassist and producer Bill Laswell, percussionist Hamid Drake (known for his work with Fred Anderson), saxophonists Wayne Shorter, Henry Threadgill, and Pharaoh Sanders, pianist Herbie Hancock, and numerous others. While Gigi's songs are inspired by the land and culture of Ethiopia, they possess a deeply felt humanity which makes them accessible to all.

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