Welcome to world of QWANQWA!
Music has long had the beloved nickname “The Universal Language”. It is the world’s mother tongue, understood by all.
Qwanqwa is comprised of 4 of the finest Ethiopian traditional instrumentalists, and Kaethe (who has been living in Ethiopia and working with Ethiopians musicians since she first set foot in 2009). It’s been called a supergroup of master virtuosos, holders of tradition, brought together by a spirit of experimentalism.
The group was formed 6 years ago, and has been steadily growing, performing and recording in Addis while honing it’s unique sound. Now, with our third album, we as Qwanqwa present our takeon a forgotten melody of the Blen tribe of Eritrea, a muscly version of a Gurage melody, as well as an epic wedding medley on side B. This album stands out as a contribution to the canon of modern Ethiopian music is notable. The sound is a summation of the stories of each of the members, their rich and varied backgrounds, and is inspired by the music of remote cultures in the region, and draws on the creativity and expression of the musicians. You will love Endris’s swirling masinko melodies, Mesele’s punk Krar solos, Kaethe’s wah-violin, all held together with Misale’s heavy goat skin drum beats.
We brought Shahzad Ismaily (of figure8 studio in Brooklyn, extensive performing credits) to Addis for an intensive 3 days in Addis’s best studio, Langano Studio. Mixing was done in New York with Shahzad, with mastering by Sarah Register, acclaimed for her mastering and for her group Talk Normal. With this all star team, we are proud to present this music to the world.
An additional opportunity has been given to us: Qwanqwa has been selected to perform a showcase concert at this year’s WOMEX World Music Expo) in Poland, to take place this coming October. WOMEX is the largest gathering of professionals in the world music community and is known to both launch and augment the careers of anyone chosen for their showcase. At WOMEX, we are sure to establish contacts with festival organizers, talk with managers, link with booking agents, introduce our work to a specialized and influential audience of professionals. This is the one time of year that all the people in the industry meet, and is an effective way to move up in our touring career.
This prestigious showcase invitation, along with the album, perches Qwanqwa at a point with lots of possibilities. We need your help to make the best of this moment of opportunity. Until now, we have done everything ourselves. But in order to make the best of these synchronicities, we need to bring our supporters together.
Some of funds we raise will be used to cover international flights, lodgings, food, and incidentals while we are in Poland, promotional materials to give to people in he industry, as well as visa fees, and anything else that gets us there. Part of the funds will be used to pay for the mixing and mastering of the album, as well as the artwork and graphic design of the album.
Join us on this journey!
Sample Artist Tracks
AccessPass™: 'Volume 3' Download
QWANQWA Volume 3: Five long compositions and one 18 minute wedding medley. A psychedelic experience brought to you by traditional Ethiopian instruments.
'QWANQWA Volume 3' Signed CD
The new album on signed CD.
Painted Violin Case by Kaethe
Kaethe will take a vintage wooden violin case and custom paint it for you. Very stylish!
Hand-made men's shirt
Hand-made men’s shirt from Kaethe’s emerging clothing line -- WUZZAWAZZEE
These shirts are soft, breezy, made from rayon found in the eastern town of Diredawa. The buttons are. They are short sleeve button down shirts, with beautiful prints. Each one is a limited edition items.
Hand-made baby blanket
These exquisitely fluffy baby blankets are part of the WUZZAWAZZEE line by Kaethe.
It’s very finely hand-woven Axumite (northern Ethiopia) fabric with detailing by Kaethe.
Choose from 3 types of dresses:
From WUZZAWAZZEE designs
Full catalogue- CD version
Qwanqwa Volume 1 (cassette)
Qwanqwa Volume 2 (CD)
Qwanqwa Volume 3 (CD)
Full catalogue- Vinyl Version
Qwanqwa Volume 1 (cassette)
Qwanqwa Volume 2 (vinyl)
Qwanqwa Volume 3 (vinyl)
Qwanqwa Volume 3 + live WOMEX show
The new album + a download of our show at WOMEX
30 minute Skype lesson
Skype music lesson with any of the Qwanqwa band members.
One of a kind- SCARVES
These beautiful scarves are super limited edition. Carefully chosen by Kaethe on her adventures in Ethiopia, each of these scarves are one of a kind. Pictured is just one, but each scarf is completely different
Executive Producer Credit
Your name will appear as an Executive Producer in the liner notes of the new album.
Ubuntu Rising Private Show
Band Leader Kaethe Hostetter will perform her solo violin works at an event of your choice. This is music she composed inspired by her time in Ethiopia, a personal narrative, enveloping the listeners in the characters, the sounds and experiences of Ethiopia from Kaethe’s perspective