Aster Aweke

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Aster Aweke
አስቴር አወቀ
Aster Aweke performing at a 2012 concert in Melbourne, Australia.
Aster Aweke performing at a 2012 concert in Melbourne, Australia.
Background information
Born1959 (age 62–63)
OriginGondar, Ethiopia
Years active1970s–present

Aster Aweke (Amharic: አስቴር አወቀ; born 1959)[1] is an Ethiopian singer who sings in Amharic. Aster's voice has attracted broader public popularity, especially tracing back in 1990s singles and her single "Abebayehosh" in Ethiopian New Year. She is best known for her 1999 album Hagere and her 2006 album Fikir. She moved to the United States in 1981, and she returned to Ethiopia in 1997.[2][3]


Aster Aweke hails from the Amhara ethnic group.[4] Aster Aweke launched a solo career in 1977 through the release of her debut album, and followed with three more albums within the year.[5]

In 1981, she moved to the United States. She temporarily settled in the San Francisco Bay Area of California and then within two years moved to Washington, D.C. She briefly attended Northern Virginia Community College, specializing in computer science, as well as learning formal musical education, which she took a distaste towards.[6] During her time in the D.C. metropolitan area, she performed in restaurants and clubs. During her time in D.C., Aster released her U.S. major label debut Aster. Aster was released by Columbia Records in 1990 after a 1989 release by British independent label Triple Earth.[6]

In 1997, after more than 15 years abroad, Aster returned to Ethiopia, where she was warmly welcomed by thousands of fans awaiting her at Addis Ababa airport.[7]

Aster Aweke owned and operated a cafeteria in Addis Ababa called Kabu, which was named after her song "Kabu". The cafeteria ceased operations in 2015.[8]


  • Aster (1989, Triple Earth; 1990, Columbia/CBS Records)[2]
  • Kabu (1991, Columbia/SME Records)[2]
  • Ebo (1994, Barkhanns)
  • Live in London (1995, Barkhanns)
  • Hagere (1998, Kabu Records)
  • Sugar (2001, Kabu Records)
  • Asters Ballads (2004, Kabu Records)
  • Fikir (2006, Kabu Records)
  • Checheho (2010, Kabu Records)
  • Ewedhalew (2013, Kabu Records)
  • Chewa (2019, Kabu Records)[9]
Contributing artist
Featured singles


  1. ^ Aga, Mark T. "50 of the Best Old & New Amharic Music: Songs and Singers — allaboutETHIO". Retrieved 2021-07-16.
  2. ^ a b c "Aster Aweke". Discogs. Retrieved 2016-04-18.
  3. ^ "All-Music "Aster Aweke:- Artist Biography by Craig Harris"".
  4. ^ Thompson, Clifford (2020). Contemporary World Musicians. New York: Routledge. p. 61. ISBN 9781315062419.
  5. ^ "ART REVIEW: FROM VINYL TO CLOUD: THE INDEFATIGABLE ASTER AWEKE". Addis Standard. August 2, 2019. Retrieved 20 June 2021.
  6. ^ a b Harrington, Richard (October 11, 1990). "ETHIOPIAN SOUL". The Washington Post. Retrieved 20 June 2021.
  7. ^ "All-Music "Aster Aweke:- Artist Biography by Craig Harris"". By 1981, Aweke had become disillusioned by Ethiopia's oppressive political climate and relocated to the United States. Temporarily settling in the Bay Area of California with plans to pursue an education; within two years, Aweke continued on to Washington, D.C., the site of the largest Ethiopian population in the U.S. ... When she arrived in her homeland in 1997 for the first time since she'd left in 1981, {she} was greeted by thousands of loyal followers awaiting her plane.
  8. ^ "Ethiopian celebrity expanding into coffee export".
  9. ^ Insight, Addis (2019-06-22). "Aster Aweke Making a Comeback With a New Album". Addis Insight. Archived from the original on 2019-07-23. Retrieved 2019-07-23.
  10. ^ "PRESS RELEASE-YEGNA RELEASES NEW MUSIC VIDEO FEATURING ASTER AWEKE". Archived from the original on 2015-01-12.

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