Grammy-winning singer Cesaria Evora has died from from cardiorespiratory insufficiency and hypertension at the age of 70 according to TIME.com. Evora was widely known as the “Barefoot Diva” for her love of performing without wearing shoes.
The Cape Verdean singer rose to fame in the late 1980’s as the best-known performer of “morna,” Cape Verde’s national music. Her singing style brought comparisons to American jazz singer Billie Holiday.
Evora’s 1995 album “Cesaria” was released in more than a dozen countries leading to the singer’s first Grammy nomination, a world-wide tour, and album sales in the millions. In 2003 her album “Voz d’Amor” nabbed the Grammy Award for “Best World Music Album.”
A heavy smoker for decades, Evora was diagnosed with heart problems in 2005. In recent years she suffered two strokes and underwent several operations, including open-heart surgery last year.
Evora died in the Baptista de Sousa Hospital in Mindelo, on her native island of Sao Vicente in Cape Verde.
Our deepest sympathy goes out to the family and loved ones of Evora.