Radiodiffusion Internasionaal Annexe

Tiberih Tesfahuney with Assress & his Group

Hadara Zikehadet

Tiberih Tesfahuney (also seen Tebereh Tesfahunegn) was born in Asmara, Eritrea in 1947. At age 11 she saw Bezunesh Bekele and Tilahun Gessesse in concert, and decided to become a musician. In 1963, she joined the Association of the Asmara Theatre, which included in its membership Ato Atowebrhan Seghid and Tewelde Redda. Her brother – Eyasu Tesfahuney – is also a successful musician.

Tesfahuney scored her biggest hit in the mid-1960s with “Tegezana Abi Hedmo” – or “Our Lovely House” (is infested with bedbugs and fleas) – which was a criticism of Ethiopia‘s occupation and was subsequently banned. This lead to her fleeing to Sweden in 1970, but that lasted only for a few years.

In 1975, Tiberih Tesfahuney returned to Eritrea and joined the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front. Two years later during a battle in Adi Hawesh, a piece of shrapnel from a RPG left her deaf in her left ear. The EPLF sent her to Sudan to recover from the injury. In 1985, the EPLF office in Sudan eventually decided to send her to Germany to get treatment for her hearing. She stayed there until 1994, when she returned to Eritrea once again. Upon her return, she opened a bar called Ab Hedmo – after her favorite song – in the town of Asseb.

Tiberih Tesfahuney published her autobiography – Two Lives: A True Story – in 1999. It was originally written in Tigrigna, the majority of it has been translated into English – which you can find HERE. Tesfahuney passed away on March 1st, 2007. She was buried at Martyr’s Cemetery in Asmara.

Assress Tessema was one of the founders of the Association of the Asmara Theatre. He and his group recorded two other singles for the Philips label – “Temeharu” / “Sewit Lemlem” (PH 7-139) with Tiberih Tesfahuney and “Harestay” / “Meaza” (PH 7-180) without.

Catalog number PH 7-140 on Philips Records Ethiopia, released 1972.

7 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I love Teberih so much. I’m only 21 but I have decided to publish a book in her honor

Comment by Miriam Habtai

this is amazing! i feel the same way about this amazing artists and would love to learn about your progress and read the finished piece! please let me know

Comment by dahab hagos

I love Teberih, I grew with her songs. She sparked the Eritrean nationoalism in the heart of every Eritrea.
I hope one day her statue will be erected in down town Asmara.

God Rest her Soul

Comment by Teklai Bahta

Tebereh is one the great singer I admire. I can not have enough listening to here. Her songs had getting me through my ten age life.
Her romantic and patriotic songs have giving me courage to pursue our fight for Our (Eeitrean) freedom and On the other hand her feminin love songs has given me some thing to look for a perfect love during my teen life. .
I love her then and I do love her now.

RIP will love you always.

Comment by Hadi

Correction !Tberh ‘s bar abi hidmo was in Decamere not in Assab .

Comment by weddi Derres

Just a correction her bar was not in Assab it was in Dekemhare Grant Italia

Comment by Meseret

“Assress Tessema was one of the founders of the Association of the Asmara Theatre. He and his group recorded two other singles for the Philips label – “Temeharu” / “Sewit Lemlem” (PH 7-139) with Tiberih Tesfahuney and “Harestay” / “Meaza” (PH 7-180) without. ”

I humbly comment again at this above mentioned paragraph. if the Philips Label is mentioned in regards with the two singles ” Temeharu” & ” Shewit Lemlem” , why then, the name of the Immortal Eritrean Legend “Berekhet Megisteab is omitted , since Tiberh Tesfahunegn recorded this songs with him? I personally see it wrong. And, Although this platform is good enough to narrate Musical stories of the past, it is failing to have a complete research on all the Musicians and their exact History. If further enrichment is needed, I do advise you prefer to consult with the New established Eritrean Forum “Qnitna”, surely they will say something.

Robel Negash Hagos


Comment by dianaella

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