Krar Collective

Krar Collective consist of Temesegen Zeleke on the krar, which is a 5 or 6 stringed harp, singer Genet Asefa, and drummer Grum Begashaw. The trio has been dubbed “The White Stripes of Ethiopia” for their minimalist rocky sound. They base their repertoire on traditional Ethiopian songs, but have created a unique style with timeless appeal. Their vocals are full of collective cadences and long solo poems; musical stops and starts create an organic syncopation, and the krar can alternate from being lead to rhythm instrument. The ancient 6-stringed krar lyre dates far back into Ethiopian history. An important part of the Ethiopian azmari minstrel tradition, the krar is steeped in the practice of wandering troubadours performing in cafes around the country, while legend has it that the instrument itself descends from King David’s lyre. The group performed for the Sanctuary for Independent Media in July of 2013.