Published Jan 04, 2010Canadian singer-songwriter Lhasa de Sela - commonly referred to by her first name - succumbed to breast cancer on the night of January 1 at her Montreal home. She was 37.
Close friend Jules Beckman has made the following statement regarding Lhasa, who had been battling the disease for the last 21 months:
"We have always heard something ancestral coming through her. She has always spoken from the threshold between the worlds, outside of time. She has always sung of human tragedy and triumph, estrangement and seeking with a Witness's wisdom. She has placed her life at the feet of the Unseen."
Born in New York in 1972, Lhasa eventually relocated to Montreal in the early '90s. It was here that she began much of her musical career, which found her winning a Juno for her 1997 album La Llorona, as well as working with the likes of Tindersticks, France's Arthur H and Patrick Watson.
Lhasa latest self-titled album was released in April of last year, yet she was unable to tour for much of it due to her battle.
Manager David-Etienne Savoie said: "It is difficult to describe her unique voice and stage presence, which earned her iconic status in many countries throughout the world, but some journalists have described it as passionate, sensual, untameable, tender, profound, troubling, enchanting, hypnotic, hushed, powerful, intense, a voice for all time.
"Lhasa had a unique way of communicating with her public. She dared to open her heart on stage, allowing her audience to experience an intimate connection and communion with her. She profoundly affected and inspired many people throughout the cities and countries she visited."
Services will be private in order to respect her survivors in partner Ryan, parents Alejandro and Alexandra, step-mother Marybeth, nine brothers and sisters, various nieces and nephews as well as friends.