Roxette singer Marie Fredriksson has died at the age of 61 after a “17-year battle with cancer,” her management company said in a statement Tuesday.
Swedish duo Roxette—Fredriksson and Per Gessle—shot to success in the 1980s, with hit songs such as “It Must Have Been Love,” “The Look” and “Listen to Your Heart.”
The singer died on Monday, said Stockholm-based management firm Dimberg Jernberg.
“Time goes by so quickly. It’s not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment in Halmstad, listening to music we loved, sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually got to share,” said Gessele via the management company.
“Thank you, Marie, thanks for everything. You were an outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer. Thanks for painting my black and white songs in the most beautiful colors. You were the most wonderful friend for over 40 years. I’m proud, honored and happy to have been able to share so much of your time, talent, warmth, generosity and sense of humor. All my love goes out to you and your family. Things will never be the same.”
“Marie leaves us a grand musical legacy. Her amazing voice—both strong and sensitive—and her magical live performances will be remembered by all of us who was lucky enough to witness them. But we also remember a wonderful person with a huge appetite for life, and woman with a very big heart who cared for everybody she met,” said Dimberg Jernberg in a statement.
Fredriksson had experienced health issues related to a brain tumor she was diagnosed with in 2002. Although she underwent successful surgery to remove the tumor at the time, the illness precipitated a hiatus for Roxette after seven studio albums between 1986 and 2001.
Roxette released their first studio album in nearly 10 years—their eighth overall—in 2010. The band embarked on world tours and released two more albums before Fredriksson’s ill health forced her to retire from touring in 2016.
In April 2016, Fredriksson announced that she had been advised by her doctors to stop touring. “It’s been an amazing 30 years! I feel nothing but joy and happiness when I look back on the Roxette world tours. All our shows and memories over the years will forever be a big part of my life,” said the singer at the time. “I’m particularly proud and grateful for coming back in 2009 after my severe illness and to have been able to take Roxette around the globe a couple of more times. Sadly, now my touring days are over and I want to take this opportunity to thank our wonderful fans that has followed us on our long and winding journey.”
Fredriksson is survived by her husband Mikael Bolyos and their two children, Josefin and Oscar.
The singer’s management company said her funeral will be private with only close family members present.
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