Every Friday from 2016 as of in the relatively recent past in a little, second-floor room of the Crystal City caf Enjera, Ethiopian guitarist Selam Seyoum Woldemariam has driven his triplet through minor key, groove-filled understandings of 20th-century Ethiopian tunes. For the crowd of commonly 40-something-and-up Ethiopians in support, Woldemariam’s record brought back memories of when these tunes were the radio soundtrack to their lives. The band stays on a little stage caught in an awful spot, playing their parlor insane East African jazz for a gathering of individuals of around 50 people who like plates of Ethiopian and Eritrean food with flexible injera or basically drink and partner at tables nearby.
Performing live, Woldemariam says, gave him “the most outrageous satisfaction and a chance to meet my fans,” who he says cherished his shows and aren’t lovers of going out to various kinds of nightlife like move clubs or hookah bars. Woldemariam, 65, is one of the stars of a lively Ethiopian music scene that, before the pandemic, wrapped close by clubs and restaurants, most noticeably in D.C., Silver Spring, and Falls Church. Regardless, as the clever COVID has spread, diner terminations and preclusions on colossal social events have required everything to briefly wait, including gigs for two notable Ethiopian skilled workers who just conveyed new assortments.