In 2002, after fainting at home, she was diagnosed with brain cancer. During her rehabilitation she continued to make music, resulting in the album The Change and she later reunited with Gessle to record more Roxette albums, embarked on worldwide tour and continued to record as a solo artist in her native Sweden. Marie Fredriksson, who was born in Össjö, was the youngest of five children, the family later moved to the small Swedish town of Östra Ljungby. Being poor, both parents were forced to work, often leaving the children on their own, together with her siblings or neighbourhood children, Fredriksson began to play music and sing. She was often asked by her mother to perform in front of friends who were impressed by her Olivia Newton-John-like singing voice, Maries interest grew stronger in her teens as she discovered artists such as Joni Mitchell, The Beatles, and Deep Purple. At 17, Fredriksson enrolled in a college and performed in local theatre. However, she found it boring, instead longing for the thrill of an audience. As she phrased it, I wanted to perform and she became involved in theatre, and after moving to the town of Halmstad, she found herself involved in the local music scene. Joining her boyfriend Stefans band Strul, they played local gigs, after that group split, Marie and a new boyfriend, Martin Sternhuvsvud, performed as MaMas Barn. Per Gessle, the lead singer of the famous Swedish group Gyllene Tider, shared a rehearsal studio with Fredriksson. Lindbom was suitably impressed with Fredrikssons voice and offered her a contract, Lasse Lindbom asked Fredriksson to record a duet with him, Så nära nu, which lead to her joining his group The Lasse Lindbom Band. Gessle started to encourage her to start a career, but she was too nervous. Fredriksson finally accepted, and she recorded her first solo album, Het vind, Ännu doftar kärlek was the first single. Lindbom, Fredriksson, Per Gessle and Mats MP Persson started a new band called Spännande Ostar and that same year, Fredriksson and Lindbom went to the Canary Islands to write songs for Maries second solo album. They returned to Sweden for the recording, the album was released in 1986, under the name Den sjunde vågen. Den bästa dagen and Silver i din hand were released as singles, Gessle and Fredriksson had talked about working together for many years. Fredrikssons career was soaring in Sweden, but Gessle was a former member whose solo career was not doing as well. Friends and people in the industry were skeptical towards the idea of Marie collaborating with Gessle and his idea was to form a duo, singing in English, and try to have some success in Europe
Image: Marie Fredriksson by Thomas Evensson (1987)
Fredriksson performing at a Roxette concert in Spain 2001.