Hailu Mergia grew up herding sheep in the Ethiopian countryside before becoming a member of one of Ethiopia's most popular bands in the 70s. After his band toured the US in 1981, Hailu chose to stay rather than return to his home country which was in the throes of the brutal Ethiopian Civil War. Hailu gave up playing music for a living. But he kept a keyboard in the back of the taxicab he drove in Washington, and practiced between customers. Through a musical twist of fate, Hailuis back with a brand new album called Lala Belu. Hear his story, and a live performance.
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