Born in 1990 in Ontario, Canada, Abel Tesfaye had an appreciation for music at a young age. He grew up listening to an array of different musical genres, including hip-hop, funk, rock and roll and post-punk. With an absentee father and his mother working long days to support him, Tesfaye cites his grandmother as a strong influence in his upbringing. He would begin writing and recording his own music at the tender age of 17 after dropping out of high school and adopting “The Weeknd” moniker. He found critical success following a DIY mixtape campaign on YouTube in late-2010 and would go on to release “House of Balloons” the following year. Catching the attention of fellow rapper Drake, The Weeknd would appear alongside him at the 2011 OVO Fest in his native Canada. The massively successful “Kiss Land”, his debut studio effort, was released in 2013 and propelled him into the limelight, earning him spots on tour with Justin Timberlake, a headlining tour of his own (King of the Fall) and a debut with pop superstar Ariana Grande. His upcoming sophomore release, Chapter III, is slated to be released in late-2015.
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The Weeknd News
6-26-15: Canada-based hip-hopper The Weeknd has officially been named as a headlining act at the 2015 Made In America Festival in Philadelphia. The festival is slated to take place at Benjamind Franklin Parkway between September 5 and 6 and will also feature pop superstar Beyonce headlining the bill. The Weeknd will also perform at several other festivals this summer, including the Hard Summer Festival in Pomona, California, Bumbershoot in Seattle and the Austin City Limits Festival in October.
The Weeknd Performance Videos
The Weeknd Tour Dates
2015 Tour Dates
5/30/2015 - The Roots Picnic @ Penns Landing - Philadelphia, PA
7/31/2015 - Lollapalooza Festival @ Grant Park - Chicago, IL
8/1/2015 - Hard Summer Music Festival @ Fairplex at Pomona - Pomona, CA
8/14/2015 - Summer Set Music & Camping Festival @ Somerset Amphitheater - Somerset, WI
9/5/2015 - Bumbershoot Festival @ Seattle Center - Seattle, WA
9/6/2015 - Made In America Festival @ Benjamin Franklin Parkway - Philadelphia, PA
10/2/2015 - Austin City Limits Festival @ Zilker Park - Austin, TX
10/9/2015 - Austin City Limits Festival @ Zilker Park - Austin, TX
11/3/2015 – Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre
11/6/2015 – Chicago, IL @ United Center
11/7/2015 – Detroit, MI @ Palace of Auburn Hills
11/11/2015 – Newark, NJ @ Prudential Center
11/12/2015 – Boston, MA @ DCU Center
11/14/2015 – Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun
11/15/2015 – Washington, DC @ Verizon Center
11/16/2015 – New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden
11/18/2015 – Brooklyn, NY @ Barclays Center
11/24/2015 – Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre
11/27/2015 – Winnipeg, MB @ MTS Centre
11/29/2015 – Calgary, AB @ Scotiabank Saddledome
11/30/2015 – Edmonton, AB @ Rexall Place
12/2/2015 – Vancouver, BC @ Pepsi Live at Rogers Arena
12/5/2015 – Oakland, CA @ Oracle Arena
12/8/2015 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Forum
12/13/2015 – Houston, TX @ Toyota Center
12/15/2015 – Atlanta, GA @ Philips Arena
12/17/2015 – Tampa, FL @ Amalie Arena
12/19/2015 – Miami, FL @ American Airlines Arena
The Weeknd Biography
The Weeknd is the solo-moniker for alternative R&B vocalist Abel Tesfaye, who broke onto the scene in March 2011 with House of Balloons, a mixtape that was made available for free download on his website. In 2011, his track, “High for This” brought the singer recognition and was featured on the HBO show Entourage. Sonically, the Weeknd draws influences from Trey Songz, Jeremih, the-Dream, and his buddy Drake, who featured the Weeknd in multiple cameos on his 2011 album, Take Care.
The Weeknd, who is of Ethiopian descent, was born on February 16th, 1990, and grew up in Toronto, Ontario. His father was absent from his life, and his mother (who he cites as a major inspiration), worked 24/7. The Weeknd was raised mostly by his grandmother, who strictly spoke Ahmaric, and so for the first five years of his life, he did not speak any English. At age 17, he dropped out of high school and hit the road with his friend (and current XO crew member), Lamar. At the time, he hated his birth name and crafted the original stage name, “The Weekend.” He and his friend Jeremey Rose recorded his first songs and uploaded them to YouTube under that name. Due to copyright infringements (another Canadian act had already recorded under the name), Tesfaye went solo and dropped the extra “e.”
Initially, the Weeknd kept his identity a secret, but through massive success, he has since opened up to the media. He has received praise from several reputable music publications, including Pitchfork, MTV, and Rolling Stone. He has been compared to many notable artists, including Michael Jackson.