Born in Ethiopia, raised in the U.S. (including Cedar Rapids) and nurtured by San Francisco’s diverse arts scene, Meklit Hadero embodies far-flung worlds. Joining her soul-filled phrasing with a songwriter’s craft, her influences range wide: from the jazz and soul favorites she grew up on; to the hip-hop and art-rock she loves; to folk traditions from the Americas and East African home of her forebears. But her singular sound and vibe are all her own.
Meklit’s parents (both doctors) fled the Derg regime in Ethiopia when she was 1 year
old. The family was granted asylum in the US and located near Cedar Rapids where Meklit’s parents practiced medicine.
Meklit erupted to national notice with the 2010 release of On a Day Like this… on Porto Franco Records. Hailed by Filter magazine for “[combining] New York jazz with West Coast folk and African flourishes, all bound together by Hadero’s beguiling voice,” the release announced the arrival, as the San Francisco Chronicle put it, of “an artistic giant in the early stages” and garnered feature stories from NPR, PBS and National Geographic.
The journey that brought Meklit to this stage included many stops. Born in Ethiopia in the early 1980s, she grew up in Iowa, New York and Florida. After studying political science at Yale, she moved to San Francisco and became immersed in the city’s thriving arts scene. “She sings of fragility, hope and self-empowerment, and exudes all three,” wrote a Chroniclereporter. “What’s irresistible, above all, is her cradling, sensuous, gentle sound. She is stunning.” Courtesy of CSPS.
[box_light]Paul Adams captured Meklit Hadero with her band Darren Johnston on trumpet, Lorca Hart on drums and Jeff Denson on acoustic bass during their 2.4.13 appearance at what is becoming Paul’s second home, CSPS.[/box_light]