Home > Uncategorized > Ethiopian music legend Tilahun died

Ethiopian music legend Tilahun died

Ethiopian music legend Tilahun Gessesse died last night at the age of 68.

Tilahun passed away on Sunday night in Addis after returning from the United States to join his families for Easter celebration, it was reported.

When relatives, friends and fellow musicians welcomed him at Bole Airport at 8.30, Tilahun was said to be in fairly good shape. After reaching home, he was enjoying the company of friends and family members who came to welcome him. But few hours after he went to bed, he started complaining about pain in the heart and was taken to hospital almost immediately. He died on the way.

Tilahaun who has been hailed as an immortal legend of Ethiopian music sold millions of albums in a career that spanned five decades. Born in Addis around Temenja Yaz sefer in 1940, Tilahun spent much of his childhood in Wolisso town. He begun singing professionally at Hager Fikir Theatre in 1953 and alter joined Kibur Zebegna music band where he has done most of his hits.

His death prompted waves of tributes from fans, fellow musicians and prominent personalities. Athlete Haile Gebre Selassie described him as a national monument and his death as a serious blow to the nation. Musician Dawit Yifru told Sheger Fm that Tilahun is someone who has accomplished a lot and has a left an everlasting legacy. Sport journalist Demissie Damte said Tilahun was no mere musician, but a figure who instilled in many a love for the country and flag.

All FMs in Addis are playing his songs and re-running old interviews with the singer. People from all parts of the country are calling to express their sorrow. One caller said Black Monday has come true.

Funeral services are planned for Wednesday and public memorial are also planned.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Dawit
    April 20, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    I was just devastated.

  2. mimishaaa
    April 20, 2009 at 1:01 pm

    Sad thing …. he will always be rememebered

  3. Abayneh
    April 20, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    Tilsheye what went wrong I can’t believe my eyes when I read this I am so sorry man how many things you have based and with this sir Dr. Tilahun Gessesse you have long lasting memories you will never be forgoten I love you. You will always stay in my heart as the number one. RIP

  4. Dagmawi Loulseged
    April 20, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    It is just abig sorrow i can’t beliveit!!!!!!

  5. Abiy
    April 20, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    Tilahun almotem, besraw hiyaw new.

  6. Pascal
    April 20, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    c’est un jour triste!

  7. desalegn
    April 20, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Tilahun almotem, besraw hiyaw new.

  8. Ayele Bekerie
    April 20, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    Dear Arefe,

    I was shocked with the sudden death of the Great Ethiopian Cultural Icon, Dr. Tilahun Gessesse. We indeed lost a remarkable Ethiopian who utilized his creative talent to help us know and appreciate our sense of oneness. I grew up with his music and the musics of Yekibir Zebegna Orkestra. I have had a chance to attend several live concerts of the Band at Janhoy Meda. Dr. Tilahun songs educated us about love, friendship, and country. His deeds and incomparable voice will live with us forever.

  9. Sawel
    April 20, 2009 at 2:59 pm

    I’m deeply sad and wept by his death! He was a man who was loved and admired for decades indeed. He was a sincere man who loved his country with all his heart.

    R.I.P Tiliye

  10. April 20, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    It is so pathetic to hear the death of this legendary artist! It is a great loss to this generation! We miss you Tilahun!!!

  11. April 20, 2009 at 4:36 pm

    It was so awful and devastating! I have never guessed or imagined Artist Tilahun is going to die! How dare i? Like many others i have grown up along with his breathtaking lyrics and songs. But now i am no more confident. I lost something very crucial to my soul. Let God Bless His soul!

  12. Sam
    April 20, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    We all die in the end. We just don’t know when the final call comes to you and I. It is sad to hear Tilahun’s passing away. He voiced so much of our joys, sorrows, and everything in between. We had him for over 50 years. A very appropriate song I can think of at the moment is Tnfashe TeqerTso Yqemet Malqesha…

    I was browsing Ethiopia-related websites and all seem to carry the news of Tilahun’s death and writing their condolescences in so many words. For the moment we all seem to agree on one thing and to care about each other. The big question is if we can sustain it and if we can look back and declare our life had any purpose and meaning to bring to those we shared our life with.

  13. Girum
    April 20, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    deeply sad

  14. alem
    April 20, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Very sad news indeed May he rest in peace.

  15. April 20, 2009 at 10:15 pm

    I’ve never been a big of Tilahun’s. But his death came as a shock to me. LeBetesebu ena LeAdnaqiwochu metsinantin emegnalehu.

  16. April 21, 2009 at 12:39 am

    i wes shocked deth of the great ethioian gold singer tilahun the rest in peace

  17. April 21, 2009 at 12:54 am

    I was shoked when i hered ethiopian goid sinder tilahun gesses death God Bless His soul & his family!

  18. Tadesse Arefine
    April 21, 2009 at 6:50 am

    “I’m proud of him..”

  19. Hiwot Yigzaw
    April 21, 2009 at 6:58 am

    “really, I never forget what he did in the past”

  20. Hiwot Yigzaw
    April 21, 2009 at 7:12 am

    I’m really disappointed by his sudden death, even though Dr. is not die because he is in all Ethiopians heart. I wish God Bless His soul.

  21. Abreham Kedir
    April 21, 2009 at 7:13 am

    I’m really disappointed by his sudden death, even though Dr. is not die because he is in all Ethiopians heart. I wish God Bless His soul.

  22. Juru
    April 21, 2009 at 12:15 pm


  23. ab
    April 22, 2009 at 5:32 pm
  24. Teshome
    April 22, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    Telahun Gessess envelops the soule of Ethiopians. He has touched every aspects of Ethiopian life. His presence not only magnifies his gift for music, but much more than that—a dignified human being with utmost respect for people he sang for. No matter the size of the stage either it be a local school or a National stage he brings a grace unparallel by any others. Luckily for us, he is going to be present yet again in our weddings, he will be nudge us be strong in face of hardships, he will be a reminder what Ethiopia means to all of us, he will interpret Afan –Ormo to Amharic so we make a date KOTUME –WGIN_GELA- he will let us cruse in Addis from Art-kilo – to Langano—so we don’t have to worry that much. After all, he left too much more than what mortals can handle.

    Thank you for the company.
    God Bless your soul

  25. Melese Wolde
    April 23, 2009 at 10:52 am

    We couldn’t say” the late Tilahun” ; he is the existing legend forever.

  26. April 23, 2009 at 11:26 am

    we r so sad for wat a suddenly happen on Dr.Telish.we wish his soul would be in heaven.lebetesebochu mesenanaten enemegnalin.

  27. December 8, 2009 at 5:33 am

    I am very sorry about what happend to tilahun and Ihave no words to exprese my filings how much I love hem . anyway I Wish agood rest for his soul and for the rest of his families life thank you from Minesota USA

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