Chrissy Amphlett, lead singer of the Australian rock band the Divinyls, died Saturday in New York after a long battle with breast cancer, according to the Associated Press. She was 53.
The Divinyls hit big at home in the ‘80s and ‘90s with four Top 10 albums, one of which, “Divinyls,” reached No. 15 in the U.S. on the strength of the group’s breakout single “I Touch Myself,” which went to No. 4 on the Billboard Top 100 in 1991.
Amphlett revealed in 2010 that she had breast cancer and that because she also had multiple sclerosis she would be unable to go through radiation treatment normally given to treat breast cancer.
“It’s unfair, but life is not fair -- even rock stars get breast cancer,” she said at that time. “But there’ve been many girls before me who have dealt with it successfully. It’s easy to feel sorry for me but I feel sorry for people who are suffering it alone,” she said.
“I’ll get over it,” she said. “I’ve got songs to sing, I’ve got stages to perform on. I’m a keep-on-going sort of girl.”
She and her husband, Divinyls drummer Charley Drayton, had been living in New York. The group disbanded in 2007.
“Christine Joy Amphlett succumbed to the effects of breast cancer and multiple sclerosis, diseases she vigorously fought with exceptional bravery and dignity,” her family said in a statement issued by her cousin, musician Little Pattie Thompson.
“With her force of character and vocal strength,” the statement added, “she paved the way for strong, sexy, outspoken women.”
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