Abebaye Hunde Jirata [Qubee: Ababaayee Hundee] was born in Bodji Dirmaji District, West Wollega Zone, Oromia Region, in 1969. As a child, she was inspired by the songs of Tesfaye Gabbiso and Yeshi Nemera. Later she became fond of Teferi Angose‘s Oromo songs. In her life journey, she successively joined Bodji Dirmaji Mekane Yesus “A” Choir, Gimbi Mekane Yesus “A” Choir, and Gullale Bethel Church Choir.
Abebaye Hunde began solo singing in 1992 at her home congregation in Bodji Dirmaji and later expanded it to the other areas where she lived. She was invited to sing at spiritual conferences such as in Dembi Dollo in 1995, the Finfinne Oromo Congregation in 2002 and the Emmanuel Baptist Church in 2011. At that time, she was often accompanied by keyboardist and guitarist Abraham Wakgari. Currently, she is musically supported by her son Milkias Mengesha.
In 1990 (Ethiopian Revolution), Abebaye and other members of Bodji Dirmaji Mekane Yesus Choir were imprisoned because of their Christian belief. However, the prison wardens released them after they had heard the choir members singing in Amharic:
ቁልፉ በእጅህ ነው ትዘጋለህ ትከፍታለህ
ሥልጣን የአንተ ነው ትገድላለህ
[The key is in Your hand; You can open.
The authority is Yours; You can kill.
You can raise; You will save me!]
Abebaye is among the well-known gospel singers of the 1990s revival movement in the Oromia Region. One of the songs that strongly moved the listeners was:
Ani badnaan kan ana barbaade
[When I was lost, he searched for me].
Abebaye lives in Burayu, a suburb of Finfinne [Addis Ababa].
(1) Adaraa isa fuutee mee yaadadhu [Please remember the responsibility you took]. Cassette recorded by EECMY Yemisrach Dimts Communication Services (Bodji studio) in 1993.
(2) Ati garuu isuma sana yaa Waaqayyo koo [But You are who you are, My God]. Cassette and CD recorded by Gemechis Fromsa studio, Addis Ababa, 2007.
(3) Mardokiyoos balbaala dura taa’ee [Mordecai sat at the door]. CD _ _ _
(4) _ _ _ [_ _ _ (transl.?)] VCD _ _ _
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published in 2010: