A couple of years ago, I was on another tezeta kick and wanted to learn more about the genre beyond the handful of songs I knew. Wikipedia, the amateur researcher’s most reliable companion, had this to say:

Tizita songs are a popular music genre in Ethiopia and Eritrea. Tizita is known for strongly moving listener's feelings not only among the Amhara, but a large number of Ethiopians, in general.

It continues:

Western sources often compare tizita to the blues. Other musical equivalent are the Portuguese Saudade, Assouf for the Tuareg people, or Dor in Romania.

Saudade, if you’ll allow me one more gratuitous Wikipedia quote:

is an emotional state of melancholic or profoundly nostalgic longing for a beloved yet absent something or someone. It is often associated with a repressed understanding that one might never encounter the recipient of longing ever again.

What a word! Whew.

I was reminded of this when Matthew McVickar — who has a seemingly inexhaustible ability to find excellent music (which I find extremely enviable if I’m being honest!) — posted this yesterday:

I periodically experience the very specific emotion of listening to an album that came out 10–20 years ago and thinking “this would have meant so much to me if I heard it when it came out, but that can’t happen now.” Kind of a… nostalgia for nostalgia?

I think of this sensation — which, like Matthew, finds me from time to time — as a kind of saudade: longing for a past that can never be 💔