José José Dead at 71: Mexico’s ‘El Príncipe de la Canción’ Dies

José José has died at the age of 71 after complications he suffered from pancreatic cancer. News of his passing was confirmed by the singer’s representative Laura Núñez, according to Reforma.

Mexican singer José José
José José | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

The singer that was born in México City as José Rómulo Sosa Ortiz, first rose to fame in the early 1970s. He found success singing “El Triste” at an international music festival showing off his tenor vocal ability.

José José was open with his alcohol addiction problems that he struggled with at the height of his fame. It was in March 2017 where he announced he had a cancerous tumor.

There is a cancerous tumor that is growing in my pancreas, that is why I am so thin,” he told Primera Hora. “The doctors have told me that we are in good time to combat cancer that is why we have started the first sessions of chemotherapy. I am coming and going from the hospital. I am calm, it is not the first time that I have had to face a disease in my lifetime, there have been many tests and God has always helped me. This will not be the exception, everything is going to be fine.”

Although José José and his family went on to report that the cancer was completely eradicated, as the years progressed he got worst physically. He was hospitalized in México 2018 and then taken to Miami where he lived until his death.

He had not made any public appearances and friends from the media were not able to see him either. In the midst of all of this, his children from his first marriage became estranged when their younger half-sibling did not allow them to visit their father.

Latino celebrities react

As the news of José José’s passing was made official by various Mexican news outlets, celebrities were quick to react on Twitter. Mexico’s stars took to social media to express their condolences to the family and share memories they had of him.

Actress Chantal Andare: “Sad news of the passing of the great José José. I will never forget the chat we had when he was a judge on Cantando por un Sueño [Singing for a Dream]. I will never forget his words and flattery towards me. Rest in peace dear Príncipe de la Canción.”

Actress Raquel Garza: “I got to know him on La Fea Más Bella [The Prettiest Ugly Girl] and I had never seen an unconditional love towards his fans. Always gracious, humble and with a voice that got to our soul. His voice and his songs will forever be with me.”

Singer Natalia Jiménez: “I regret profoundly the passing of the great José José. He enlightened our lives with his voice and his marvelous and unforgettable songs that will last in the history of music and our hearts. Rest in peace.”

Broadway star, Mauricio Martínez: “I ask for applause for the great Príncipe de la Canción. This loss hurts me greatly. Rest in peace. The best voice of México. This is for you.”

Singer and actress Lucero: “I feel for the loss of our great, dear and admired José José. There will never be a voice like yours. Eternally the Principe de la Canción, rest in peace and we will always remember you. My sincere condolences to his beautiful family and friends.

The loss of José José has deeply affected the Latino entertainment community. He was one of the great singers of México and now his legacy of music will live on forever.