LUXEMBOURG – Maria Mendiola has died at the age of 69. The singer, who was one half of the Spanish pop duo, passed away in Madrid surrounded by her family yesterday (Saturday) morning.
Cristina Sevilla, who was her bandmate, broke the news in a post on the group’s Instagram account. She wrote:
“My dear Maria, wonderful artist, but above all my friend, she has left us today. I can not articulate words. I can only give thanks for so much love I have received from her, and tell her what I had the opportunity to say so many times in life: I love you.”
Mendiola and Mayte Mateos originally formed Baccara when the pair were working as flamenco dancers performing to tourists in the Canary Islands, after being spotted by a music executive.
They scored a worldwide hit with Yes Sir, I Can Boogie in 1977, selling millions of copies and reaching No1 in the UK.
In 1978 the second Baccara album, Light My Fire, was released across Europe, and whilst not matching the international success of the first, it spawned the single “Parlez-vous français?” which was selected as Luxembourg’s entry in that year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
Despite full marks from Italy, Portugal, and Spain the duo finished in seventh place. However high sales, particularly in Denmark, Sweden, and Belgium, meant that the single was a commercial success.
Although it was subsequently covered by other artists, the song gained a new lease of life earlier this summer after being adopted by Scotland fans as their anthem at the Euro 2020 football tournament.