Kemer Yesuf, an Ethiopian Oromiffaa performer, and his kids. In contrast to other regions of the world where festivals and concerts are frequent, in Ethiopia they are rather infrequent. The yearly Selam Festival and Acacia Jazz Music Festival are just two examples of these exceptional times. The Selam Festival’s fifth iteration was able to attract worldwide musicians including Alpha Blondy, historical Mali Griots, and a variety of alternative bands.
Even though this festival was successful in putting on a lively performance, the organizers are honest about how difficult it is to bring in foreign performers in Ethiopia. One can count how many major artists have ever performed in Ethiopia using these uncommon occurrences. The topic of why there are so few concerts here arises given the number of well-known worldwide singers who have performed in the bordering nations, such as Kenya.
Even with the limited number of concerts, it is usual to hear well-known international performers postpone, reschedule, or skip their scheduled attendance. Some of these mishaps include the recently postponed Jah Cure concert due to a visa issue; the highly publicized Yassin Bey (Mos Def) concert was canceled due to a passport issue; P-square was paid 200,000 dollars but decided to reschedule the concert for a week; Damian Marley, Nas, and another reggae artist Capelton were all canceled; etc.