The alt R&B singer was born Abel Tesfaye in Scarborough, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, where he would be raised mostly by his grandmother as his single mother worked often to support them. From his Ethiopian grandmother, he learned his first language: Amharic.
One of his first fans was fellow Canadian artist Drake, who shared some of the tracks an unknown Weeknd posted to YouTube in December 2010. Drake would become a frequent collaborator and was the only guest performer on the singer's debut album, Kiss Land.
Before his debut LP, he earned his critical acclaim through the release of three mixtapes - House of Balloons, Thursday, and Echoes of Silence - with some calling him the greatest musical artist since Michael Jackson.
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