Ethiopian jazz, also referred to as Ethio-jazz, is a blend of traditional Ethiopian music with jazz, combining the pentatonic scale-based melodies of Amharic music with the 12-tone scale and instrumentation of western music. Over time the genre has grown to include elements from other genres such as afrofunk, soul, Armenian jazz, and Latin rhythms. The genre originated in the 1950s with Armenian refugees such as musician Nerses Nalbandian, who created a fusion of Ethiopian and Western music while working at the National Theatre. Ethiopian jazz was revolutionized by Mulatu Astatke in the late 1950s. Astatke is considered the father of Ethio-jazz music.
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