Mahmoud Ahmed


Mahmoud Ahmed (born May 18, 1941) is an Ethiopian singer of Gurage ancestry. He gained great popularity in Ethiopia in the 1970s and among the Ethiopian diaspora in the 1980s before rising to international fame with African music fans in Europe and the Americas.

Mahmoud's life started out as fairly ordinary, by Ethiopian standards. He came from a humble background; his dad was a handyman and Mahmoudworked as a shoeshine boy before and after school to earn extra income. But from an early age he knew he wanted to make music his life. In 1962 when the Imperial Body Guard band’s singer did not show up, Mahmoud persuaded the band to sing with them. In no time he became a member of the band’s regular line-up and remained with them until 1974. He went to perform with other Ethiopian bands.

In 2007 Mahmoud was the BBC World Music Award recipient. On 19 July 2016 the Mahmoud received France’s Chevalier of Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.


Track artwork
Abdalrhman Nabil
Mahmoud Ahmed - Ethiopiques 10 - Ethiopian Blues & Ballads - Tezeta
ETAddis Ababa, Ethiopia
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Mahmoud Ahmed
Profile added by In-house East Africa on 22 Jul 2016