roducers and technically flawless DJs. If you don’t listen to them, stop what you are doing immediately and go check them out!.
What is your style as an artist?
I’m an Afro Electronic DJ. I play everything from Afro House and Afro Techno to old African music from all over the continent. I love the product of African soundscapes, vocals, melodies and percussion against the backdrop of House and Techno beats and rhythms.
You’ve been credited with pioneering and spearheading the afro house sound in Ethiopia. Was this on purpose?
Absolutely, yes. I felt kind of a shallow joy at playing Eurocentric Electronic music, and felt it was my responsibility because of this platform that I have been given to explore and showcase sounds and artists from the continent and the global south who don’t get enough airtime. I’m on a mission to decolonize dance music as the rest of the world has so much more to offer. Also its just strange to me as an African, to go out in Africa and hear everything but African music. I genuinely also think this sound is the most interesting thing happening in Electronic music right now.
Who/which audience does your genre appeal more to?
Anybody that likes African music and Electronic music. Any one that has an open mind and likes to dance. Its hard for me to gauge and its always a nice surprise to see people react to your music who you wouldn’t expect it from. I’ve been surprised by some of the older guests at some of my events or the little kids busting out dance moves like you wouldn’t believe at festivals during the day.
You are one of the most acclaimed nightlife performers in town. How do you observe the difference between performing in nightclubs and at other events you perform in?
Hahaha thank you! I’m not the biggest fan of performing at nightclubs anymore to be honest with you. I’ve come to realize its a very predictable and one dimensional approach that people want with music in those settings, and let me be clear, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I just have no interest in playing music that everyone already knows and people have heard millions of times.
What are the challenges for a performing artist/DJ to function?
Staying relevant, fresh and at the same time providing something that people can relate to.
What is ARMAGHEDION’s ultimate career ambition?
I want to leave an imprint on the music scene here. I would love if mature and complex African Electronic music was more ubiquitous. That I could go out on any given night and hear something fresh and new; to hear the generation after me come into their own and push the boundaries even further.
We know you perform a lot at several nightlife events. Which ones stand out for you?
My favorite events that I have played have been the Nomad events. Every artistic element was carefully curated, the aesthetic, visuals and music was painstakingly reviewed to provide a holistic and unique party experience. I’ve also really enjoyed the UnUsual DJ events. The energy that those crowds bring is unrivaled in Addis. But for me the stand out event has been Bira Biro – the level of production, the lights, the sound and that stage! It completely redefined the boundaries and pushed what we thought was possible in Ethiopia. Big shout out to Korenti as well, that event launched who I was as an artist, and as the only multi day electronic music festival in Ethiopia its a lynchpin in the electronic music circuit.
Do you think this is the right time for artists like you to shine? Why?
Ethiopia is opening up, and you have to credit artists like Rophnan and Chelina for making new sounds palatable and accessible for a local market. You can never achieve anything without someone else going before you and making an impression, so I’m grateful for all the groundwork thats been done and I’m also very much looking forward to hearing the next generation of musicians and artists.
Do you have any ongoing projects?
I have a couple of things in the pipeline, but for whats out now – there is my monthly party at Escobar, Tribes n Vibes. As well as Nomad events. Both of these are centered around Afro House and Afro Techno. I also hope to have my debut EP out by the end of this year.
How can your fans follow you and keep up with you?
You can follow me on Instagram for events and updates @armaghedion, and like my facebook page @armaghedion and soundcloud/mixcloud if you want to hear m