Along with his future wife, the 18-year-old walked for days, finding refuge in Sudan, where their first child would be born.

The young family of three relocated to North Dakota 18 months later, where Mekonnen’s sponsors suggested he seek employment at a grocery store.

In a recent exclusive interview with Tadias Magazine, the legendary artist who is scheduled to make a historic appearance accompanying the Either/Orchestra at the prestigious Chicago Jazz Festival in September, talks about his extensive music career, his memories of Ethiopia and his famous daughter, the Swedish pop star Emilia.

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Analysts said the devaluation should improve the Horn of Africa nation’s trade deficit.

Figures for fiscal year 2010 show a $7 billion deficit, based on $8.7 billion in imports and $1.7 billion dollars in exports.

The group is credited for popularizing Amharic classics such as – all of which were written by the artist.

Prior to settling in the United States in the early 1990′s, Teshome spent over 20 years in Sweden, where he continued to hone his music skills, earn a graduate degree in Sociology, and witness his daughter grow up to become a Swedish ballad and pop music singer.

We spoke with Teshome Mitiku over coffee on U street in Washington, D. in what the artist says is his first exclusive interview since his hurried journey out of Ethiopia 40 years ago.

The soft-spoken and humorous artist, who sprinkles his answers with sporadic laughter, discussed with us his distinguished career spanning four decades and three continents.

One of the fastest-growing ethnic groups in Dallas, they’ve gravitated toward Rowlett, Wylie, and Garland, where the Ethiopian community association that Mekonnen heads hopes to build a community center.

“It was designed to bring Ethiopians together and keep the tradition and culture,” Mekonnen says of the association, “to teach our children, making sure they know their roots.” Read more at » – Join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook.

“He has made such a mark on the Ethiopian music scene, bringing a unique and poetic voice with thoughtful lyrics and a beautiful reggae vibe,” a posting on his Facebook fan site said. If you go: 09/17/10, New York, NY, Joe’s Pub Time: pm. Our collaborators from Ethiopia are arriving this week, and we hit the ground running with a fantastic show in NYC.