View the Meet Temesgen video (English, Amharic)
Temesgen was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He has studied with Alemayehu Fanta and Teshome Shenkute at the Yared School of Music in Addis Ababa. It is Temesgen's dream to keep alive the ancient musical traditions of Ethiopia. He is in the process of setting up a school to teach the Begena and the Krar.
"Listen to the stark, haunting sounds of traditional Ethiopian music and you will be elevated to a place free from worries and strife. The wisdom and knowledge of centuries of culture are communicated by the nimble fingers and resonant voice of Temesgen. Temesgen sings songs of life, of love and of devotion. Deeply spiritual, with the simple truth of folk music, sanded and distilled by generations of musicians, these songs have evolved over the ages to shine with the pristine beauty of the very roots " - liner notes from Begena Bedtimes (2006).
A versatile singer-songwriter, Temesgen has begun to explore the frontiers of ethio-fusion. His non-traditional work is a soulful stew of reggae, ethiopian, and jazz. He has released, Begena Fusion, an album that features the begena in a modern milieu. In 2013, Temesgen released Krarization, a collection of popular contemporary songs re-interpreted with the help of the krar. Temesgen has also created instructional DVDs on how to play the krar and the begena.