‘Eritrean Love Song’ was composed by Beraki Gebremedhin, and when Martin Anderson invited me to contribute to his ‘Yodit’ project, I was delighted to discover the florid nature of this lovely composition and so obtained permission to arrange it. Although not imitating the original score exactly, I have tried to keep to the spirit of the piece, passing the main melody between the instruments, and keeping the soul of the piece constantly in mind, trying not to make it too ‘western classical’ in style.
The traditional Eritrean song ‘Tigrinya Dance’ appears in many different versions. After an introduction the main tune, accompanied by a drum, present a charming, flowing tune in three-time. Again, I have passed the tune between the instruments. The second part of the song contains five beats, and the song drifts towards a dreamy ending.
Although I never met Yodit, these pieces are dedicated to her memory. Martin tells me that the ‘Tigrinya Dance’ was one of her favourite Eritrean songs, and I hope this tribute to her life would have made her smile!