Jimmy Elidrissi: Czech singer and ‘Macho Man’ dies at 74

Image copyright Princess Eugenie/Instagram Image caption Elidrissi’s family named their family home the ‘Afternoon Tea Tree’, after his

Czech singer Jimmy Elidrissi has died, aged 74.

There was an outpouring of grief among fellow artists and fans, including his American wife Princess Eugenie, whose initials appeared in his song.

He died of natural causes at Buckingham Palace in London after travelling from Prague, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said.

Elidrissi died without fanfare at his family home in Prague.

His London-based publicist, Jimmy Fox, confirmed his death to the BBC.

‘Unique voice’

He was born in the Czech town of Temreli in 1937 and in the 1950s began singing on TV with local comedy group Siklomoto.

In 1959, he joined West Germany’s Starsmusik, briefly becoming national music critic before returning to Czechoslovakia.

During the Cold War, the country’s communist regime restricted artists, prompting Elidrissi to flee.

In 1959, he married Polina Borovskova, a young opera singer who would go on to become his wife and mother of their four children.

They later lived in Prague, with their eldest son, Jadwiga, also becoming a prominent singer.

His family returned to the US when Jadwiga married Goldman, an American.

In 2000, Elidrissi was allowed to return to his homeland and briefly lived in a town by Prague Castle until the city was dissolved by former Czech president Vaclav Havel.

In the 1980s, he began a career in showbusiness, initially as a nightclub DJ.

He recorded more than two dozen albums and in 2002 reached number 24 in the Czech Top 40 with the song Afternoon Tea Tree.

Princess Eugenie is from the same generation as Elidrissi and her late mother Sarah Ferguson.

The couple tied the knot in a lavish wedding ceremony in 2007.

Princess Eugenie was present at Elidrissi’s funeral last week.

Princess Eugenie and her mother, Sarah Ferguson, attended the funeral for legendary Czech musician Jimmy Elidrissi at his home in Prague

It was held on Wednesday, and the Sun said Princess Eugenie paid tribute to her husband’s “unique” voice.

The tabloid said Eugenie had sung when she was younger and a photograph showed her pointing out “her own now famous family name” to her husband, also known as Ruckstuhl.

Princess Eugenie added that she would never forget the impact his songs had on her.

She posted a picture of the coffin on her Instagram feed with the caption: “My husband has never forgotten. His music and voice changed my life forever. Thank you for being such a big part of my life. RIP.”

Outside the funeral, Elidrissi’s sons Ruckstuhl, Elidrissi-Borovskova and Nikola played their own instruments at the central Prague concert hall.

While the music was playing, people paid their respects and laid flowers and cards.

Elidrissi, who survived chemotherapy in the 1990s, had stayed active and collaborated with some of the Czech Republic’s biggest names in recent years.

He held the record for the world’s longest career in showbusiness, and the inaugural Czech Grammys ceremony was organised to honour his contributions to the industry.

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