Sunil Perera, outspoken Sri Lankan singer, dies at age 68

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COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sunil Perera, a versatile Sri Lankan singer, musician, composer and entertainer, has died of apparent complications from COVID-19. He was 68. Perera entertained generations of Sri Lankans with captivating songs, but won their minds and hearts with his outspoken comments against social injustice, corruption, racism and suppression of democracy. Sunil and his band, “Gypsies,” were stalwarts of baila, a form of music popular in Sri Lanka that is a remnant of Portuguese colonization. In normal times, thousands of people would have attended his funeral, but only immediate family members and friends were able to take part because of the country’s coronavirus lockdown.

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