Kate McGarrigle, the Canadian folk singer most remembered for the 10 albums she recorded with sister Anna, died Monday in her Montreal home. She was 63. McGarrigle, mother to singers Rufus and Martha Wainwright and ex-wife of American singer/songwriter Loudon Wainwright III, had been fighting cancer for more than three years.
According to a statement by McGarrigle’s brother-in-law, the cancer started in her small intestine and eventually spread to her liver. Rufus canceled his Australian tour—slated to begin in February—to be with his mother during her final days.
For more than 30 years, the McGarrigle Sisters recorded music in both French and English, and their songs have been covered by artists like Linda Ronstadt, Billy Bragg and Emmylou Harris. Even terminal illness, it turns out, didn’t keep McGarrigle from making music. Just last month, she played a three and a half hour show at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
Watch Kate and Anne McGarrigle perform “Hard Times Come Again No More” with help from Rufus Wainwright, Emmylou Harris and more:
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