Published Dec 19, 2011Considered by many to be the queen of world music, Cape Verdean singer Cesaria Evora has passed away at the age of 70 following a long period of health struggles. She died due to cardiorespiratory insufficiency and hypertension.
Born into poverty in the Cape Verde archipelago in 1941, Evora rose to prominence after gaining attention in Europe in 1988. From there, she gained worldwide renown, selling hundreds of thousands of albums.
Evora was best known for popularizing the Cape Verdean genre morna. Evora was sometimes called the "Barefoot Diva" as she tended to perform without shoes on in an effort to draw attention to the struggling women and children in her home country.
In 2003, she went on to win a Grammy in the World Music category for her album Voz D'Amor.
In 2008, Evora suffered a stroke. Then, in 2010, she had major heart surgery. Still, she maintained her stunning output, releasing the excellent Nha Sentimento in 2009. However, Evora retired in September due to her health problems.
Evora had a son and a daughter by different men but never married.