Kelly Fraser arrives on the red carpet at the Juno Awards in Vancouver, Sunday, March, 25, 2018. Inuk singer Fraser, whose popular YouTube cover of Rihanna helped inspire a Juno-nominated career of songwriting and activism, has died at 26. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

Inuk singer Kelly Fraser, whose Rihanna cover in Inuktitut inspired a music career, dies at 26

The pop musician, who was living in Winnipeg, died earlier this week

Inuk singer Kelly Fraser, whose popular YouTube cover of Rihanna helped inspire a Juno-nominated career of songwriting and activism, has died at 26.

The pop musician, who was living in Winnipeg, died earlier this week, according to friends. The cause of her death has not been revealed.

Fraser, who was raised in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut, picked up a guitar at 11 and formed her first band four years later.

Much of her early work involved performing English pop hits in the Inuktitut language. Her viral cover of Rihanna’s “Diamonds” exposed her to many new listeners, leading to her debut album in 2014.

But it was her sophomore release “Sedna” that garnered Fraser wider acclaim, earning her an Indigenous music album nod at the 2018 Juno Awards.

Fraser was also an advocate for music education in Indigenous communities, as the co-founder of Nunavut Hitmakerz, which provides workshops in Inuktitut to underfunded communities.

A GoFundMe campaign to support her siblings has been launched.

David Friend, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

COLUMN: Lessons from a failed bureaucrat

Sometimes the rules need to be applied with reason

Sap thief taps Saanich park maple trees, faces hefty fine

One tree found with four taps in Mount Doug Park

Work has started on Malahat Skywalk, expected completion in 2021

$15-million project expected to open next spring

Victoria shops avoid plastic bags, despite bylaw being voided

The city is working on getting the bylaw re-established

Langford ranks as fastest growing community in B.C.

Westshore community grew by 5.2 per cent in 2019 compared to 2018

VIDEO: Feds look to help 126 Canadians quarantined in China for coronavirus

China has confirmed more than 4,500 cases of the new virus, with more than 100 deaths

North Island bracing for heavy winds

Gusts ready to hit the communities at 120 km/h as Wednesday evening falls

Was there a tornado on Vancouver Island Monday?

Suspected phone app glitch gives eerie warning

Nanaimo man hit with pole in dispute over off-leash dog

RCMP say no charges recommended at this time

B.C. reports first coronavirus in Vancouver region

First patient visited Wuhan, China, reported symptoms

Bystander who tried to help dog being attacked not liable for its death: B.C. tribunal

Owner of dog killed tried to get $5,000 in damages from man who tried to save it

INFOGRAPHIC: See how fast your B.C. city grew in 2019

The province’s fastest-growing municipalities were located on Vancouver Island

Landowner hearings begin for Trans Mountain expansion in Alberta

Detailed route talks start in Spruce Grove, in B.C. communities soon

Baby Bear statue returned to be reunited with Mama and Papa in Island Secret Garden spot

Culprit left it near the Henry Road roundabout in Chemainus with a note attached

Most Read