The Weeknd
(Abel Tesfaye)

The Weeknd, singer, song writer, dancer, and record producer,r was born February 16, 1990 in Toronto,  Canada. He is the son of Ethiopian immigrants but does not have much contact with his father who left his family when Abel was a toddler. The Weeknd’s musical influence ranged from Traditional Ethiopian music to Michael Jackson, the “King of Pop” himself.The Weeknd claims that Jackson’s 1979 hit “Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough” is “the song that helped me find my voice. It’s the reason I sing”. 

The Weeknd began recording his musical talent while in high school and dropped out, yet continued exploring his interest by releasing a free download called “House of Balloons” in 2011. He then released two more mixtapes, Thursday and Echoes of Silence. These three works excelled is career, and led to his collaboration with Drake on Drake’s 2011 album Take Care which featured several tracks from the House of Balloons. This landed a deal for Abel with Universal’s Republic Records. 

 All together, these three works, plus three additional unreleased songs were re-released to form what is now known as the Trilogy, a compilation album released November 13, 2012 by Public Records and XO. The Trilogy became a platinum-selling record, yet he still managed to hide himself from the public at large as he refused interviews for a long time and chose to use images of women for his 2013 album, Kiss Land, instead of images of himself. The mystique was intentional, but also reflected Abel’s true shyness and insecurities that troubled him early on in his career. 

From start to now, The Weeknd has maintained this mystique yet has managed to build a huge fanbase and leave an undeniable impact.

OVOXO (Drake + The Weeknd)


Slow tempos

Rumbling Bass

Forlorn echoes


Enticing  tone



Alternative R&B




Musical genres including soul, hip-hop, funk, indie rock, and post-punk have all influenced The Weeknd’s sound. Here are artist that he has taken after as well.

Michael Jackson


The Weeknd credits Michael Jackson as the key artist that has influenced him to become a singer. Michael Jacksons influence can be seen in many of Abels works of art. One of his hits, titled DD, reference Michael Jackson’s lyrics to Dirty Diana. 


The Weeknd views that by singer vulgar lyrics in an elegant, sexy way, he is paying homage to the Prince. 

Aster Aweke

The Weeknd says his high-flying vocal style was nfluenced by habesha singers like Aster Aweke. 



 Daft Punk


Doc McKinney



Frank Dukes



Lana Del Rey


Travis Scott

Kendrick Lamar


Hidden Hills, California




Grammy Award Winning Song "Earned It" from the movie "Fifty Shades of Grey"

(just some!)


American Music Award (2)

BET Award (1)

Billboard Awards (8)

Grammy Award (3)

Guinness World Records (2)

iHeartRadio Music Award (2)

MTV Europe Music Award (1)

Peopler’s Choice Award (1)


Academy Award (1)

American Music Award (8)

BET Award (7)

Billboard Awards (24)

BRIT Awards (1)

Grammy Award (10)

Guinness World Records (2)

iHeartRadio Music Award (7)

MTV Europe Music Award (5)

MTV Video Music Award (5)

NAACP Image Award (4)

Peopler’s Choice Award (5)

Teen Choice Award (7)

Works Cited 


Other Work...

Jhanae Askew

Blues with some Rhythm!

Can’t Escape the Rhythm & the Blues R&B is an abbreviation for Rhythm & Blues. It is blues-influenced genre name was originally created for use

Read More »
Jhanae Askew

The Power of Hip-Hop

The Beat is Hot! The term “Hip-Hop” was first used by the South Bronx community leader Afrika Bambaataa . “Hip”, meaning ‘current’, has been a

Read More »
Detroit Techno
Jhanae Askew

Techno in Detroit

The Techno Way Detroit Techno is the beginning of Techno as we know it today. Techno is referred to as “Detroit Techno” when it is

Read More »
Jhanae Askew

The Evolution of Gospel

#KnowYourGospel Gospel music is unique amongst white and black cultures. Of course, we are here to discuss the Black Gospel. Black spirituals, ragtime, blues, jazz

Read More »
Black & Blues
Jhanae Askew


Black & Blue The Blues. The blues emerged in the South after the American Civil War but was all too familiar of a sound to

Read More »
Fusion Jazz
Jhanae Askew

Masego, he can do it all!

Masego Micah Davis, “Masego”, was born in Kingston, Jamaica and raised in a Christian community in Newport News, Virginia. “Masego” means “blessed” in Tswana, the

Read More »
jubilee quartet groups
Jhanae Askew

The Famous Blue Jay Singers

The Famous Blue Jay Singers The Famous Blue Jay Singers only recorded ten titles for Paramount in 1932, but it was those titles that became

Read More »
Negro Spirituals
Jhanae Askew

Lets Get Spiritual

Lets Get Spiritual! Colonizers managed to strip enslaved Africans of many things, but music was not one of them. Negro spirituals are songs created by

Read More »
Jhanae Askew

Turn Up the Folk Music

The unpleasant experience of Africans who were sold and enslaved birthed the sound of folk music. People attempted to tell their story through lyrics. The

Read More »