(and others who may be interested),
I am sorry that the Ethiopian Orthodox Church music is so difficult to find [outside of the actual Church]. At this moment, I cannot recall the brother's name, but there were some websites that he posted:www.tewahedo.org
1st: You may go to, www.tewahedo.org
, then go to the right of the screen, I think the eighth link down says, 'wedasie mariam andemta'--it means, 'The Interpretation of the Praise of St. Mary'.
This prayer is a Monday-Sunday prayer that St. Ephraim the Syrian composed, and tradition says that he met St. Yared the Ethiopian in Egypt and transferred this prayer to him. The history of 'how' the prayer was composed by St. Ephraim is a little lengthy. Anyway, in the Ethiopian/Eritrean Orthodox Tewahido Church, this prayer is spoken and sung. It's unbelievable and it's long when sung or chanted.
2nd: When you click that link, it will take you to a page that you will see St. Mary and Her Beloved Son on the left. In the center of the page you will see the links for RealPlayer/WindowsMedia/PDF listed. Above is the Amharic, which says, 'Wedasie Mariam Andemta' and on the other side it says, misbak
, which means 'The Psalm', but it refers to the 'chanted' Psalm of David, usually for the Divine Liturgical Service or Se'atat
. In Ethiopia, the Psalms of David are also called mezmur,
like the Coptic.
3rd: In the first link, which is on the top-left of the list, you can hear a very brief example of St. Yared's a-qwa-qwa-m
. In this a-qwa-qwa-m
, you will hear the chanter singing about the Seraphim and the Sanctus [or Q-dus, Q-dus, Q-dus I-g-zee-a-b-hay-r Tsa-ba-o-t F-tsu-m...].
4th: On the opposite side, you can click on the list from top-to-bottom and hear the chanter, chanting the Psalm or misbak for the occasion. On this occasion, the teacher is teaching about the Interpretation of the [prayer] Praises of Mary. It takes place during the Fast of the Virgin [August], that is why there are 16 links.
For the other link: www.ethiopianorthodox.org
1st: Click on ENGLISH, once you enter the site.
2nd: Click below [under the link that says, English] on CHURCH MUSIC
3rd: Once you click on CHURCH MUSIC, there should be a page written mostly in Amharic, but will say Church Music in BOLD letters.
4th: Underneath, there is a grid with Ge'ez/Amharic on the left and English on the right.
5th: You may listen to what you like, of course, but the links for the ETHIOPIAN LITURGY, ST. YARED'S HYMNS and the WEDASIE MARIAM, I know that they work and are typically clear. Please try them anyway.
*If you click on St. Yared's Hymns
, this is ma-ha-lay-t
, it is expressed through a-qwa-qwa-m
for the specific holyday. A-qwa-qwa-m means 'to stand.' During this time of praise, those who studied this type of St. Yared's hymnology stand for a very long time chanting with the use of three instruments: Tsi-na-tsi-l [sistrum], ke-be-ro [drum] and me-qwa-mee-ya [prayer stick, just like the ones that the Sanhedrin & high-priests had on Passion of Christ].
From top to bottom, the links start with: (1) St. John (2) St. Michael (3) Birth of Christ (4) Baptism of Christ (5) Resurrection of Christ (6) Genbot Lideta-The Major Commermoration of St. Mary's Birth (7) Hedar Mikael-Commemoration of St. Michael in Hedar/Hator
I hope that this helped a little and I hope that you will be able to enjoy it.
Take care and peace to all,