Popular Ethiopian musician Bruktawit Getahun, better known as Betty G, was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (Adeyefa,2018). She has schooled in a number of institutions including; French High School – Lycée Gebre Mariam, French University – Université de L’IAE Poitier as well as Commercial College of Addis Ababa University.
Betty G’s music journey began in high school where she would sing in various night clubs. She is a multi-lingual singer as she can sing in English, French, and Amharic. This fact is of great advantage to her since she can easily gain a large audience that can relate to her music. Her style of music is mostly Contemporary, Traditional Ethiopian songs, Jazz, Soft Rock and Pop. Her aim is to expose her rich and beautiful Ethiopian heritage to the world by incorporating aspects of the Ethiopian culture in her work.
She made her first appearance into the music scene in 2010 with her debut song, ‘Cry for More’. She released her first album dubbed Manew Fitsum, which consists of thirteen original songs, in November 2015. This was received well into the Ethiopian music scene. She dropped her next album, Wegegta, which consists of thirteen tracks as well in 2018. Betty G has worked under record labels; Mondo Tunes, and Yisakal Entertainment.
She has worked with a number of artists in the Ethiopian music industry notably; Johnny Raga, Theodros Kassahun (Teddy Afro), Natenael Ayalew (Nhatty Man), Zeritu Kebede among others. In the international scene, she worked with the late Nigerian Ras Kimono and together they recorded a song titled ‘Save Our Land’, whose aim is to create awareness about global warming and its effects to the environment. She also worked with Jazz artist, Tomas Doncker, during her stay in the United States.
Her songs include; ‘Don’t Break My Heart’, ‘Alefe Halifu’, ‘Sew Alegn’, ‘Manew Fitsum’, ‘Kante Aybeltim’, ‘Sin Jaaladhaa’, ‘Meshenef Siyansegn’, ‘Ay Zendro’, ‘Ye Zenbabaw Kelebete’, ‘Nana Demaye’, ‘Ere Manew’ ‘Tilq Simet’, ‘Biruh Tewat’, ‘Aye Set’, ‘Super Star’, ‘Fikir Aybeltim Wey’, ‘Minew’, ‘Tawekaleh’, ‘Yekelekelal’, ‘Waga’ among others.
Betty G performed at the Blue Note Jazz Club in New York. She also performed at Coke Studio Africa, making her debut appearance in 2016. She was paired up with Tanzanian star Nandy in the 2017 edition of Coke Studio Africa.
Awards and Nominations
Her second album, Wegegta, earned her six nominations at All Africa Music Awards, 2018 edition. She won three categories; Album of the Year, Best Female Artist in Eastern Africa and Revelation of the Year (Lucy,2018). Other categories which she was nominated are; Artist of the Year, Best Duo in African Jazz and Best Artist Group in African Rock.
Besides her music career, Betty G works with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Ethiopia. She has visited a number of refugee camps in Ethiopia such as the Gure-Shombola Camp, Shire Camp and Aysaita Refugee Camp, mostly dealing with female refugees from Southern Sudan and Eritrea. During her stay in New York, she worked with a nongovernmental organization, Studio Samuel, which deals with women empowerment in order to eradicate poverty and improve living standards. Betty G is the ambassador for Studio Samuel.