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Saban Bajramovic Dead At 72
Published July 7, 2008

By Joanna Padovano

The legendary singer passed away in his hometown of Niš in southern Serbia.

Gypsy singer and songwriter Saban Bajramovic passed away on Sunday, June 8. He was 72. During his final days, Bajramovic was living in poverty and unable to walk due to his serious health problems first brought on by the heart attack he suffered in 2007 - he had been in and out of the hospitals since then.

Bajramovic recorded more than 20 albums and is thought to have composed around 700 songs, one of which is the official Roma anthem entitled "Djelem, Djelem." Known as the "King Of Roma Music," Bajramovic will be remembered for his many great contributions to Balkan music. He was also well known for his time spent in the musical group Black Mamba.

Saban Bajramovic was born in 1936, in the former Yugoslavia. At age 19, he fled the army and was subsequently sentenced to three years in prison. It was during this time that the soon-to-be legend became a part of the prison orchestra, which played a variety of music including jazz, which was a passion for him. After prison, Bajramovic began to officially pursue a career in music and recorded his first album in 1964.

The aging singer performed his last concert in 2007 in Dubrovnik, Croatia. He is survived by his wife Milica and their four daughters.