Listen to Austin 360 Radio

Argentine singer-songwriter Diego Verdaguer dies of COVID-19 complications

AP

MEXICO CITY — Diego Verdaguer, Argentine singer-songwriter of hits such as "Corazón de papel," "Yo te amo" and "Volveré" and husband of singer Amanda Miguel, died from complications of COVID-19. He was 70 years old.

The Argentine musician and naturalized Mexican died Thursday afternoon in Los Angeles, his daughter Ana Victoria said in a statement issued early Friday morning by Diam Music, the record company owned by Verdaguer and his wife.

"With absolute sadness, I regret to inform all his public and friends, that Dad today left his beautiful body, to continue his path and creativity in another form of eternal life," Ana Victoria said. "My mother, myself and the whole family are immersed in this pain, so we appreciate your understanding in these difficult moments."

The statement was also posted on Amanda Miguel's Twitter account, with the hasht tag, "#descanseenpaz" (rest in peace) along with emojis of a praying hand and a white heart.

On his own Twitter account, Verdaguer's last message, posted Thursday night, was to his wife: "I'll never get tired of dedicating it to you! You are and will be the thief who stole my heart," reads the tweet next to an image of the couple on the beach and part of the lyrics of his song "La ladrona": "Cuídame, quiéreme, bésame, mímame" (Take care of me, love me, kiss me, pamper me).

According to the statement, Verdaguer contracted COVID-19 in December and was hospitalized. It was not reported whether he was vaccinated and his representatives did not immediately respond to e-mails seeking details.

On several occasions, Amanda Miguel spoke out against the vaccine, including in August 2020 with a post she shared on Twitter titled "Propaganda to force us to get the experimental vaccine," and in April 2020 in a now viral message - "Maybe the vaccine is the famous covid. No thanks, nor the microchip at all" - in response to a tweet from CNN anchor Camilo Egaña. It is not known if she has since changed her stance.

No details were offered about Verdaguer's funeral and his representatives asked to respect the family's privacy.

Amanda Miguel and Diego Verdaguer have been married since 1975.

On social networks, colleagues and friends were beginning to express their grief upon hearing the news Friday morning.

"We deeply regret the loss of #diegoverdaguer, we were together recently when they came to our concert in Los Angeles. Our embrace for @amandamiguels and his family," tweeted Argentine duo Pimpinela.

The singer celebrated 50 years of artistic career in 2019. He was born in Buenos Aires on April 26, 1951 and debuted as a soloist at the age of 17 with the single "Lejos del amor", which was followed by others such as "Yo te amo" and "Volveré".

Since 1980 he resided in Mexico, the country to which he dedicated his album "Mexicano hasta las Pampas", which was nominated for two Latin Grammys. He also released its follow-up, "Mexicano hasta las Pampas 2", as well as two volumes of live album "Mexicanísimos".

"I can tell you, I am more Mexican than anything. I love Mexico, I love what Mexico has meant in my life, I love the opportunities Mexico has given me," the artist said in an interview with The Associated Press in 2019.

Verdaguer met Amanda Miguel when she was 18 and he was 24. Their daughter Ana Victoria, who is also a singer, was born in 1983.

"Amanda Miguel has been my inspiration since I met her," Verdaguer told the AP. "I value so much everything we've done together as a couple, as artists, as individuals."

In 1987, the couple founded Diam Music, with which Verdaguer released all of his albums since, including the most recent, 2019's "Corazón bambino," and an album to be released posthumously, "Por la libre."

Other hits included "Corazón de papel", "Que sufras más", "Creo solamente en ti" and "La ladrona", which reached the top of the charts in Mexico, the United States, Spain and Italy.

In 2019, Verdaguer was recognized by the Society of Authors and Composers of Mexico (SACM) with a special award for his 50-year career.

"You have to evolve spiritually and understand the meaning of life," Verdaguer told the AP. "We come to live a divine experience, we come to learn, we come to give ourselves, we come to perfect ourselves, we come to give, we come to help, because by giving and helping you feel better."