Malta Mourns Death Of Beloved Musician Tony ‘Bayzo’ Camilleri
Popular singer Tony ‘Bayzo’ Camilleri of Malta Bums and Ġensna fame died last night
Popular musician Tony ‘Bayzo’ Camilleri, renowned as the lead vocalist of The Malta Bums in the 60s and for his performances in rock opera Ġensna in the 80s has died at the age of 70.
Camilleri is perhaps most renowned for his rendition of L-Ewwel Tfajla li Ħabbejt which The Malta Bums released in 1973 and which has remained popular ever since.
The announcement of Camilleri death last night prompted an outpouring of tributes on social media, with President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca praising him for his contribution to Maltese music.
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat described Bayzo as “one of Malta’s finest artists”, while Opposition leader Adrian Delia said his voice will continue living in the hearts of several Maltese people.
So sad to learn that #Bayzo has passed away. He was unassuming and modest, and yet one of #Malta finest artists. His role in #Gensna and his rendition of L-Ewwel Tfajla li Habbejt are cornerstones of our musical history -JM— Joseph Muscat (@JosephMuscat_JM) February 1, 2018
If the golden era of music in the #Maltese language were to be a country, #Bayzo would be its capital city. His voice was unique, as was his gentle disposition. #Bayzo might have passed away last evening, but his brilliant voice will live on and on from generation to generation. pic.twitter.com/k0pHmD3u1r— Owen Bonnici (@OwenBonnici) February 2, 2018
Culture minister Owen Bonnici hailed his “unique voice and gentle disposition”.
If the golden era of music in the Maltese language were to be a country, Bayzo would be its capital city,” Bonnici said.
Bayzo’s friend and fellow singer Paul Giordimaina said he and Ġensna producer Joe Galea were planning to visit the singer on Tuesday.
“I called him to ask if we could meet up on Tuesday, but he was unable to speak to me. His wife then told me that he would call me back, but that phonecall never arrived.”
And the tributes kept pouring in...
What sad news. One of the greatest voices of our time & such a gentle soul. RIP https://t.co/xDtZV7k58V— Josanne Cassar (@JosanneCassar) February 2, 2018
RIP dear friend - Great memories Eurosong 1993 - Imut Tony Camilleri, il-Bayzo- newsbook https://t.co/6LpNNvQom0— Claudette Buttigieg (@ButClaudette) February 1, 2018
RIP Bayzo. Privileged to have written some lyrics for him to embellish with his velvet voice....— Charles Flores (@charlesfloresma) February 2, 2018
Bayzo’s funeral will be held on Monday afternoon at the parish church of his hometown of St Paul’s Bay.