Haydée Mercedes Sosa 9 July 1935 – 4 October 2009), sometimes known as La Negra (literally: ‘The Black One’, an affectionate nickname for people with a darker complexion in Argentina), was an Argentine singer who was popular throughout Latin America and many countries outside the region. With her roots in Argentine folk music, Sosa became one of the preeminent exponents of El nuevo cancionero. She gave voice to songs written by many Latin American songwriters. Her music made people hail her as the “voice of the voiceless ones”.
Sosa performed in venues such as the Lincoln Center in New York City, the Théâtre Mogador in Paris and the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City, as well as sell-out shows in New York’s Carnegie Hall and the Roman Colosseum during her final decade of life. Her career spanned four decades and she was the recipient of six Latin Grammy awards (2000, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2011), including a Latin Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004 and two posthumous Latin Grammy Award for Best Folk Album in 2009 and 2011. She won the Premio Gardel in 2000, the main musical award in Argentina. She served as an ambassador for UNICEF.