Roxette Singer Marie Fredriksson Dies Aged 61 After 17-Year Cancer Battle

Roxette Singer Marie Fredriksson Dies Aged 61 After 17-Year Cancer Battle

Marie Fredriksson, the singer of Roxette, was one of the most recognizable voices in the 1980s and 90s pop music scene.

After fighting a tough battle with cancer that lasted over 17 years, Roxette Singer Marie Fredriksson died at the age of 61 on Monday (December 9). A statement from her management company confirmed the news, reports BBC. Marie Fredriksson, the singer of Roxette, was one of the most recognizable voices in the 1980s and 90s pop music scene. With bandmate, Per Gessle, the duo achieved international success with their albums Look Sharp! (1988) and Joyride (1991), and iconic songs like The Look, Listen to Your Heart, Dangerous, It Must Have Been Love, Joyride, and Fading Like a Flower (Every Time You Leave). "I'm proud, honored and happy to have been able to share so much of your time, talent, warmth, generosity, and sense of humor. You were the most wonderful friend for over 40 years. Things will never be the same," her bandmate Per Gessle said. He added that  Fredriksson was an "outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer." It is believed that the voice behind the global hit It Must Have Been Love had suffered from health problems after undergoing radiation treatment for a brain tumor. In an official public statement given to Expressen, a newspaper in her native Sweden, her family said, "It is with great sadness that we have to announce that one of our biggest and most beloved artists is gone," reported The Guardian



It was in September 2002 that Fredriksson first had a seizure in her bathroom following which she suffered a cracked skull. Subsequently, it was reported that she had a brain tumor after which she was given only a 25% chance of survival. Despite all odds, she managed to perform until 2016 while she was simultaneously receiving radiotherapy and fighting its side-effects. However, she announced her retirement in 2016 after doctors had advised her to stop touring to prioritize her health.



The 61-year-old singer witnessed widespread success as a solo artist in her native Sweden before joining hands with Per Gessle to form Roxette in 1986, the act that went on to garner global acclaim. The acclaimed duo's breakout single The Look, reached number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1989. They followed it with another immensely successful number, It Must Have Been Love, that became a smash hit after featuring in the soundtrack of the iconic 1990 award-winning film Pretty Woman, starring actors Richard Gere and Julia Roberts. 



"Marie leaves us a grand musical legacy," said her manager Marie Dimberg. "Her amazing voice - both strong and sensitive - and her magical live performances will be remembered by all of us who were lucky enough to witness them. But we also remember a wonderful person with a huge appetite for life, and a woman with a very big heart who cared for everybody she met."



Roxette toured and released albums throughout the 1990s and eventually ended up selling more than 80 million records across the world. They were famous for their breezy hits like Dressed For Success and power ballads such as Listen To Your Heart. They culminated their songwriting ideology in the title of their 1995 album, Don't Bore Us, Get To The Chorus



Fredriksson also wrote an autobiography, The Love Of Life, in which she spoke about the impact cancer had on her life. "At last, it feels like I have reconciled myself to having a radiation injury to live with. That this is how it turned out. I have lost many years through the disease. And it is also a sadness to age. But every day I think I'm grateful to be sitting here. And that I can still sing." In her last single that released in 2018 (which was however recorded years ago), titled, Sing Me A Song, she addressed her mortality, as she sang, "The love I had and gave / Makes it hard to say goodbye," perhaps knowing that her time had come.


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