Munit Mesfin (born 1981) is an Ethiopian singer and songwriter best known for working in a duo with German vocalist and guitarist Jӧrg Pfeil. Munit sings in her mother tongue Amharic and English, with inspiration from traditional Ethiopian songs. Some of her music includes vocalization without words. Mesfin has a focus on social issues and female empowerment.
Munit Mesfin was born in 1981 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Her mother is Dr. Tewabech Bishaw, a public health professional and a pioneer, who was the first female public health officer in Ethiopia. Her father is Prof. Mesfin Abebe, Ethiopia's first soil scientist, who has worked his whole life for the protection of Ethiopia's natural resources, especially its soil. Both of her parents grew up in the city of Jimma, Ethiopia.
Munit moved to India at the age of ten because of her mother's work with UNICEF. She moved to Windhoek, Namibia, at fourteen, where she completed her GCE Ordinary Levels. At sixteen, she moved to the United States, where she attended Northfield Mount Hermon School in Northfield, Massachusetts. She went on to study economics and government at Smith College, a private women's liberal arts college in Northampton, Massachusetts. During her youth, Munit performed with various local choirs. While at Smith, Mesfin performed with the college's a capella group, the Smiffenpoofs.
While living in Washington, D.C. after college, Munit was a backup singer for Ethiopian-American soul singer Wayna. She worked with many other Ethiopian musicians, including her brother, Jorga Mesfin, an Ethio-jazz saxophonist. After living abroad for almost 20 years, Munit returned to Ethiopia in 2007 during the celebration of the Ethiopian Millenium, where she met her frequent collaborator, Jӧrg Pfeil.
Since then, the pair have released two albums as Munit and Jӧrg: Just the two of us: Live at the coffee house, in 2008, and ፪ ። 2, released in March 2013.
Munit Mesfin is married and has three children.
- Shelemay, Kay Kaufman (2021). SING AND SING ON : sentinel musicians and the making of the ethiopian american diaspora. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. p. 249. OCLC 1241245393.
- "Munit and Jorg to Perform During DC Soccer Tournament Week at Tadias Magazine". www.tadias.com. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
- Editor. "Munit Mesfin | Africainterviews". www.africainterviews.com. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
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- Mesfin, Munit (11 May 2014). "To My Mother. By Munit Mesfin, Daughter and Mother". The New Africa. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
- "Singing for Big Change « – Smith College Office of Alumnae Relations Smith College Office of Alumnae Relations". alumnae.smith.edu. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
- Kiviat, Steve (1 July 2013). "See Some Ethiopian Music This Week (Because There Will Be a Lot of It)". Washington City Paper. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
- "Meklit Brings Ethiopian Jazz to the Bay Area – June 23, 2017 – SF Weekly". SF Weekly. 2 June 2017. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
- "Ethiopian Music Festival in Washington D.C." Ethiosports. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
- "Munit and Jorg in ፪::2 – Addis Standard". Addis Standard. 9 May 2013. Retrieved 5 July 2018.