Mother of Eritrean soul, Tsehaytu Beraki, dies
By Tesfalem Araia | BBC Tigrinya
Legendary Eritrean musician Tsehaytu Beraki has died in
exile in the Netherlands at the age of 79.
Regarded as the mother of Eritrean soul, Tsehaytu was a trailblazer for female musicians in the Horn of Africa – shaking off the conservative outlook of society in the 1960s.
In the region, she is on a par with her contemporary African pioneers such as South Africa’s Miriam Makeba and Tanzania’s Bi Kidude.
Dubbed the “Sunshine of Eritrea”, she sang in Tigrinya and was a renowned player of the kirar, a bowl-shaped lyre.
She started her career aged eight, playing in local bars.
A singer, songwriter and dancer, she released several albums about love and politics – especially during the height of the Eritrean struggle for liberation.
Some of her memorable hits include Mejemerya Fikri and Abashawel.
Watch some of her performances: