Lhasa

Born 27 September 1972. Died 1 January 2010.

American / Canadian singer

Biography

Lhasa de Sela (September 27, 1972 – January 1, 2010), also known by the mononym Lhasa, was an American-born singer-songwriter who was raised in Mexico and the United States, and divided her adult life between Canada and France. Her first album, La Llorona, went platinum in Canada and brought Lhasa a Félix Award and a Juno Award.

Following this success, Lhasa toured with Lilith Fair, then joined her sisters in a French circus troupe, contributing her husky voice to the musical backdrop. She lived in Marseille and began to write more songs, then moved back to Montreal and produced a second album, The Living Road. Once again, she toured in support of her album, and she collaborated with other musicians on their projects. During this time, BBC Radio 3 honored her as the best world music artist of the Americas in 2005. She published a book about her impressions of life on the road.

Lhasa recorded a third album, titled Lhasa, but she was diagnosed with cancer in 2009 around the time it was released. She endured severe treatments but these did not halt the illness. She died on New Year's Day 2010. A memorial program of her music was put together in January 2012, performed in Montreal by artists who had worked with her.

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