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Samuel Yirga's Debut Album Out Now

Samuel Yirga - Guzo

Samuel Yirga is a bright young musical talent exploring Ethiopia’s rich heritage. Pianist, composer and Dub Colossus band member, his album ventures into the world of jazz, soul and funk, into big-band brass ensembles and simmers with deeply-impassioned, introspective solo piano tracks.

“Incredible … this album has absolutely blown my socks off!”
Gilles Peterson BBC 6 Music – Album of the Week

“Impressive debut from Ethio-jazz pianist … Twenty-something Yirga is a man on a mission - to become Ethiopia’s greatest pianist. He’s surely halfway there.”

“… (a) staggeringly brilliant album.” 
Sydney Morning Herald *****

"On Yirga’s solo piano pieces we get to hear a full flowering of his spirit and thus his huge potential as both musician and composer … A supremely gifted and versatile young pianist."
The Arts Desk

Buy Guzo Now (CD / Apple Lossless / MP3)

Discover more about ‘Guzo’

Published 9th Jul 2012, 3:23pm »

'Guzo' selected as Gilles Peterson's album of the week (BBC 6 Music)

Samuel Yirga's debut album 'Guzo' (out 9 July) has been selected by Gilles Peterson as album of the week on his Saturday afternoon show on BBC 6 Music.

On the show (which also featured a conversation with New York rapper Nas) Gilles played a selection of tracks from the album including, 'Firma Ena Wereket', 'Nou Se Soleil' and 'I Am The Black Gold Of The Sun'.

Re-listen to the show online via the BBC website (available until 7 July).

Published 1st Jul 2012, 12:09pm »

Samuel Yirga's New Single 'I Am The Black Gold Of The Sun' Released In US

On a freezing cold snowy night last winter Real World Studios felt as warm as the tropics. The voices of the Creole Choir of Cuba infused Samuel Yirga's version of The Black Gold of the Sun with spiritual soulfulness. Samuel's delight as the Choir lifted the roof with their powerful harmonies was clear to see - his beautifully-arranged tune had come to life. Add the sparkle of Nicolette's voice on the verse plus the towering Horns of Negus brass arrangement and the track was ready to celebrate the coming summer.

The single is now available digitally via iTunes (US) or from our online shop.

Published 18th Jun 2012, 9:46am »

Goodbye to Jan Fairley

Everyone at Real World Records was saddened to hear of the death of Jan Fairley on Saturday 9th June. We have worked with Jan as a writer on a number of Real World releases sleeve notes and artist biographies over many years. Her fantastically knowledgeable and incisive writing has been a inspiration for music lovers, opening up the world of the artist to the reader. We will miss her huge and detailed experience of musical culture and her infectious enthusiasm and passion for the performers she loved.

Published 13th Jun 2012, 8:29pm »

Samuel Yirga Live Session

Samuel Yirga gave this exclusive live performance for PBS radio, Melbourne, fresh off the back of his recent tour of Australia, where he launched his new album 'Guzo'.

Published 12th Jun 2012, 9:54am »

Spiro / Friday, 8 June 2012 - 7:30pm / Hall One / Kings Place

Spiro perform in London on Friday as part of the Songlines Encounters Festival at Kings Place. The festival includes some spectacular international musicians and up and coming artists championed by the magazine.

Friday's concert features musicians who draw on traditional sources but rework them in a refreshingly innovative way - so Spiro were a natural choice with their unique sound world where traditional English music meets Steve Reich.

Published 7th Jun 2012, 10:54am »

Samuel Yirga Is the Soundtrack to The Summer

As the temperatures soar this is the perfect song for a summer's day. Check out Samuel's fantastic interpretation of the classic tune along with friends The Creole Choir of Cuba and Nicolette.

Published 23rd May 2012, 10:45am »

Real World Gold - classic albums from the Real World vaults

The Real World Gold series peels back the years to revisit some of the most inspirational and beautiful music from the archives. With great performances, unexpected collaborations and unique compositions the albums still sound as fresh today as when they were recorded all those years ago.

Real World Gold is launched on 21st May with ten outstanding titles. You can listen to full sample tracks, browse our media gallery and discover more about each re-release from the Real Wold Gold homepage. Watch out for more to come in July and September.

Published 14th May 2012, 6:00pm »

Samuel Yirga launches his debut album, Guzo, in Australia and New Zealand, 11 May.

Samuel Yirga is one of the brightest young talents to emerge on the Ethiojazz scene in recent years, introduced to Real World as the pianist with Dub Colossus. His debut album, Guzo, is just the start of Samuel's musical journey and a platform to showcase his extraordinary skill as both pianist and composer. The album's roots might be firmly in the Ethiojazz of Samuel's homeland, but this young man from Addis will open up a whole new door on a musical genre and region.

Guzo is released on 11 May in Australia and New Zealand. Samuel will tour Australia in June with dates in Perth, Melbourne and Sydney.

Guzo will be released in Europe on 9 July, in France in September.

"What a fantastic album is Guzo... It has all the ingredients of a masterpiece. Great balance between avant garde jazz and sweet r&b vibe in some tracks and those Ethiopian scales... all tracks are outstanding!"

JPR at Simply Out Of This World/ Radio Bracknell

"I feel very privileged to have an early preview of this fantastic album. (Samuel's) classical music experience shows in his sensitive and thoughtful approach to his solo piano work like Ye Bati Koyita and Drop Me There and at the same time can make a beautiful Charles Stepney tune like I am the Black Gold of the Sun sound fresh yet again. A thoroughly rewarding album."

AfroBase on Juice FM

Published 9th May 2012, 11:16am »

Portico Quartet in a Bowers & Wilkins Concert For One

A great night yesterday in the legendary Abbey Road Studios as the Portico Quartet recorded a live set to help B&W celebrate the launch of their instantly desirable new P3 headphones. Not only did the guests listen to the performance through a headphone mix but they were lucky enough to take the tracks, freshly recorded and mixed, away with them.

Portico Quartet played a new driving version of Lackerboo and the now epic Line/Rubidium sequence. Lots of happy punters nibbled their canapes and sipped their wine in the gorgeous Studio 2.

Published 4th May 2012, 5:32pm »