German jazz singer Roger Cicero dies, aged 45 | Music | DW | 29.03.2016

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German jazz singer Roger Cicero dies, aged 45

Germany's best-known jazz performer has died after being diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome. His career spanned almost 15 years, making him one of Germany's most beloved musical celebrities.

Cicero was born into a musical family, with his father a renowned jazz pianist and his mother a professional dancer. Cicero started performing publicly alongside famous German acts like Helen Vita at the age of 11. He later studied at the Hohner conservatory, focusing on piano and voice.

Cicero continued his studies in jazz singing in the Netherlands and established the Roger Cicero jazz quartet in 2003. Shortly thereafter he shifted his focus to swing, playing with big bands and recapturing the sounds of the post-war era. By 2006, he had become a household name in Germany. Cicero was particularly known for his interpretations on Frank Sinatra songs, which he worked on until his death.

Other career highlights included his participation in 2007 Eurovision Song Contest, where he represented Germany in the Finnish capital Helsinki.

His song, "Frauen regier'n die Welt" (translation: "Women Rule the World") only managed to place 19th but started establishing Germany as a serious contender again.

Cicero also featured in the movie "Hilde," a biographic film based on the life of Hildegard Knef, Germany's most famous post-war actress and singer. In 2012, he also recorded "Für nichts auf dieser Welt" - Germany's anthem for the 2012 UEFA European Soccer Championship.

Cicero had suffered chronic fatigue syndrome, which reportedly led to his untimely death through a sudden stroke on Thursday, March 24. His family made the news of his death public on Tuesday (29.03.2016). Cicero was 45 years old.

DW has compiled a Spotfiy playlist in memory of Roger Cicero. Listen here:

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