Ayanna Nahmias, Editor-in-Chief
Last Modified: 20:07 PM EDT, 26 September 2009
TEL AVIV, Israel – I found this incredibly soulful vocalist while surfing the internet and happened upon a cool site that has all things and African. This video cycled through and the melody immediately attracted my ear.
Lately, I have listening and studying the phraseology, words, and rhythms of soulful singers like Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Les Nubians and Floetry; so when I heard this vocalist’s voice, I was certain that I had not heard the song and that it was not one of these sistahs.
I walked over to my computer to see who was singing and imagine my surprise to find that this is anEthiopian vocalist named Malka Ingedashet.
A consummate researcher, I immediately trolled the internet in search of anything that could provide me with confirmation that this sister was indeed an Israeli and not American. First, I discovered a site where one can download a MP3 of her music, but more importantly, I was able to listen to all the clips from her album. It takes a lot for me to buy a CD, because the song promoted on radio, videos, etc., is usually the strongest cut and the rest of the tracks are fillers. I was pleased to hear that each and every track was as strong as the video below which is titled, “Under Your Eyes” when translated from Hebrew to English.
Her sister, Ayala is equally talented. It is incredible that G-d would bless one family with so much talent, such diversity of sound, an incredible story of survival and arrival, as well as the ability to communicate in Amharic and Hebrew which are some of the most ancient of tongues.
Upon further research, I found a wonderful piece written about her in The Jerusalem Post, titled “An Independent Aliya” by Nathan Burstein. I liked the fact that the writer chose to focus the article Ayala’s own Aliya (when a person immigrates to Israel) without getting into the politics of Judaism, Right of Return, or the issues surrounding the assimilation of Ethiopian Jewry. It is truly a piece about the artist and her art. I preface the video with this bit of information because some of the comments are unfortunately typical of how some people view Jews of African descent.
Ayala’s song titled Memaheret “איילה אינגדשט – “ממהרת which translates as “Hurrying Up” is equally intriguing. A reader was kind enough to provide me with a brief translation of this song which is “sung in Hebrew (like her other songs), but there are some short verses in Tigrigna.” ~ Rachel
Where are you rushing to, why are you giving up?
Doesn’t matter what will be tomorrow, live the now, that is what is left, stick to love, going with the flow is allowed
Leave something, leave some strength…
Not everything fits to your expectations
Don’t hide the light, raise your face
Your whole life is ahead of you.
Ayala and Malka have a another sister named Meri who is also a vocalist. Below are links to all three singers MySpace pages:
It is my hope that you enjoy the music, and should you desire to learn more about African/Ethiopian Jewry, conduct your own research and come to an informed conclusion.Follow Nahmias Cipher Report on Twitter Twitter: @nahmias_report