Ethiopiques 17: Tlahoun Gèssèssè
If you're not familiar with the Ethiopiques series from Buda Musique, you'll want to be. There are 27 volumes in all and while its difficult and kinda self-defeating to pick favorites, we can't all fork over the dough for 27 downloads in one pop. Tlahoun Gèssèssè was one of Ethiopia's biggest pop stars and you don't have to know what he's saying to appreciate what he's singing. This is a hybrid of soul/funk/hi-life mainly from 1974 and 1975 and the band is tight even when its loose with blaring brass, funked up guitar, manic rhythms and Gèssèssè's vocal gymnastics sit splendidly over the top.
If you dig James Brown and Fela Kuti, you'll positively relish Tlahoun Gèssèssè. You can download the CD-quality FLAC album from Quboz.