Marie Fredriksson, lead singer of Roxette, the Swedish musical duo with hits in the late 1980s and early 1990s, died on Dec. 9, according to statements from both her family and her management company.
The 61-year-old Fredriksson had been in declining health in recent years. In 2002, doctors diagnosed her with a brain tumor and only gave her a 20–25% chance of survival. But after a long series of treatments, she went into remission and eventually went back into the studio, both as a solo artist and with her Roxette partner, Per Gessle.
“Marie leaves us a grand musical legacy,” reads a statement released by her management company Dimberg Jernberg. “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 a woman with a very big heart who cared for everybody she met.”
Gessle posted a tweet about his former musical partner following the news of her passing, saying he was honored to have met Fredriksson’s “talent and generosity.”
“Time goes by so quickly,” he wrote. “It’s not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually go to share.”
Time goes by so quickly. It’s not that long ago we spent days+nights in my tiny apartment sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually got to share! I’m honoured to have met your talent+generosity. All my love goes to you+your family. Things will never be the same. pic.twitter.com/CTegAUGrXG
— Per Gessle (@PartyPleaser) December 10, 2019
Roxette took the international musical spotlight in 1989 with their first hit “The Look.” However, most people know the group best for their song “It Must Have Been Love” from the 1990 “Pretty Woman” soundtrack. Other Billboard hits included “Listen to Your Heart” and “Joyride.”
Fredriksson leaves behind her husband Mikael Bolyos, to whom she was married for 25 years, as well as two children: son Oscar (age 23) and daughter Inez (age 26). The family told the Swedish news outlet Expressen that there will be a private funeral and burial for the singer.