Roxette – Live at Cirkus Theatre, Stockholm – August 1, 1993 – Sveriges Radio P3 –
More sad news this year. It was learned earlier today of the passing of Marie Frederiksson from Roxette,the Swedish Pop/Rock duo who were an international success all throughout the late 80s and into the 90s.
Fredriksson had a successful career in her native country prior to forming Roxette. She was a member of punk group Strul, a band which created their own music festival in 1979. Strul’s dissolution led to the creation of her next project, the short-lived MaMas Barn, after which she began releasing solo work. Her first album, Het vind, was issued in 1984, followed by Den sjunde vågen in 1986 and … Efter stormen in 1987. Roxette’s international breakthrough coincided with a period of inactivity for Fredriksson as a solo artist, punctuated only by the release of the non-album single “Sparvöga” in 1989. Subsequent solo albums included Den ständiga resan (1992) and I en tid som vår (1996).
In 2002, after fainting at home, Fredriksson was diagnosed with a brain tumour. During her rehabilitation, she continued to record music as a solo artist, resulting in The Change in 2004 and Min bäste vän in 2006, as well as the non-album single “Där du andas” in 2008—her first solo number one single in Sweden. She and Gessle later reunited to record more albums as Roxette, who embarked on a worldwide concert tour. She also continued to record as a solo artist in her native Sweden, releasing Nu! in 2013.
In 2013, Gessle reunited with his former band Gyllene Tider, who released a new album and toured Sweden, while Roxette issued their first Blu-ray/DVD concert, Live: Travelling the World. Fredriksson also released her eighth solo album, Nu!, which she promoted with a tour of Swedish concert halls. In April 2014, succeeding the announcement of the 25th anniversary of Roxette’s first United States #1 hit “The Look” they announced that they would be embarking on new legs of “The Neverending World Tour”, starting in Russia in late October 2014. “The Look (2015 Remake)”, a new recording of their 1988 single, was released in July 2015. Roxette Diaries, a documentary directed by Jonas Åkerlund, was released on streaming services in March 2016.
On 18 April 2016, an official statement was released, cancelling the last leg of “The Neverending World Tour”, due to concerns about Marie Fredriksson’s health. Her doctors had advised her to refrain from playing live. She stated: “Sadly, now my touring days are over and I want to take this opportunity to thank our wonderful fans that followed us on our long and winding journey.” Gessle added: “The joyride on the road is over now – but we sure had fun, didn’t we?” Roxette’s tenth studio album, Good Karma, was released in June 2016. The record was preceded by its lead single, “It Just Happens”, two months earlier. The album contains production from Swedish musicians Addeboy vs Cliff, with Gessle saying they were chosen to “inject new blood into the Roxette sound”. Remixes aside, this is the first time that they have allowed anyone outside of the Roxette canon to produce new music. Per Gessle toured Europe in October and November 2018 as “Per Gessle’s Roxette”. The set leant heavily on the band’s back catalogue. In October 2018, Roxette released a 30th-anniversary edition of Look Sharp!, which contained a bonus disc of previously unreleased demos and outtakes.
Marie Fredriksson died on 9 December 2019, at the age of 61, following a long battle with a brain tumour. The day of her death, the music video for “It Must Have Been Love”, posted on Roxette’s official YouTube channel, had reached over 430 million views.
Paying tribute to Fredriksson after her death, Gessle said she was “an outstanding musician, a master of the voice, an amazing performer.”
In case you missed it- here is the audio of their Unplugged MTV show, recorded at Cirkus Theatre in Stockholm, broadcast on August 1, 1993 and presumably never issued officially.
Rest in peace Marie, the world was a much better place with you in it.