Condolences pour in for Guadeloupean musician Jacob Desvarieux who died after short battle with COVID-19

Jamaican politician, Lisa Hanna, is among scores of Caribbean nationals sharing condolences for Guadeloupean musician Jacob Desvarieux.

Desvarieux’s death was announced on Friday (July 29)  with reports that the ‘zouk’ musician was in poor health following a kidney transplant.

He later caught COVID-19 on July 12 and was hospitalized shortly after.

Following his passing, several in the Caribbean community have taken to social media platforms to remember Desvarieux who has been described as a ‘hero’ in the zouk genre.

“A giant of zouk music. An unparalleled guitarist. An emblematic voice of the West Indies. Jacob Desvarieux was all of these things at once,” tweeted French President Emmanuel Macron.

Similarly Hanna said she fell in love of the sounds of  zouk after hearing the French Caribbean band Kassav, which Desvarieux co-founded.

“ I was ten years old when I heard the sounds of zouk and later fell in love with with the French Caribbean band Kassav from Guadeloupe. Jacob Desvarieux one of the bands lead singers was riveting to watch perform with his guitar and his sultry voice could pierce your soul with passion,” said Hanna in an Instagram post.

“The Caribbean and the world has lost a truly great musician.My condolences to his family, band members and friends. RIP Jacob,” added Hanna.

Desvarieux rose to prominence along with the increasing popularity of world music in the 1980s.

Zouk is a musical movement pioneered by the French Antillean band Kassav’ in the early 1980s.