Jorga Mesfin

Jorga Mesfin who grew up in a house filled with jazz records, mostly the greats immersed in the melodies of John Coltrane, Duke Ellington, Kassa Tessema, Dr. Mulatu Astatke, and Jimmy Smith, his early musical influences laid the foundation for a profound connection with Ethio Jazz, with Dr. Mulatu Astatke standing out as his paramount inspiration. Jorga’s affinity for the saxophone found resonance in the sounds of John Coltrane and Getachew Mekuria, while Emahoy TsegeMaraiam’s piano style further developed his musical palette.

His musical journey commenced with childhood improvisations, using the table as a makeshift piano. Recognizing his passion, Jorga’s mother enrolled him at Yared Music School at the age of 12, marking the beginning of formal piano lessons. The unavailability of saxophones in Ethiopia prompted him to wait until the age of 14, when a move to India for education allowed him to acquire his first saxophone from his high school.

Jorga’s love for the saxophone persisted through his college years. While pursuing a BA in Chemistry at Guilford College in the United States and later obtaining a Masters at Emory University, he found solace in the language of music. Initially engaged with the Ministry of Health in the states, his trajectory shifted in 2006, transitioning into a full-time musician with over two decades of experience.

Starting his musical journey at a young age, he has collaborated with renowned artists such as Tsegaye Gebremedhin and Vijay Iyer. As the founder of the Ethio-jazz group Wudasse, he also composed the music for the acclaimed film “Teza.” His work on “Teza” earned him the Best Music Award at the 22nd Carthage Film Festival and Best Composition at the 5th Dubai International Film Festival.

Music is the language I employ to articulate my deepest affections for God, life, family, and country. It is also a language of liberation and boundless imagination."

Jorga Mesfin

He recently unveiled his highly anticipated album, “The Kindest One,” on May 24th at Addis Jazz Festival via Muzikawi. A protege of Mulatu Astatke, Mesfin’s album delves deep into Ethio-jazz, blending spiritual experimentation with elements from Ethiopian music and jazz.

Jorga reflects on his album, now titled “The Kindest One” (originally released as “The Kind Ones” in 2007), saying, “The Kindest One symbolizes my profound relationship with God, who has granted me the gift of life and blessings to pursue music.” Recorded in 2007 in Atlanta, GA, the album made its debut on iTunes but regrettably did not receive the well-deserved promotional spotlight.

The meditative Ethio jazz masterpiece stands as a momentous creation, crafted during a one-time home concert in Atlanta, Georgia, where He invited all the kind and generous friends at the time and recorded the essence of an improvised musical exploration.

The album ‘The Kindest One’ is now available on Muzikawi YouTube channel, digital streaming platforms and the vinyl from Bandcamp shipping from the UK and US.

Official Video “Abanenegn”

"The Kindest one" Album

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