Diomedes Diaz, one of the most polemic composers and singers of the Colombian vallenato genre, died on Sunday after suffering a heart attack.
The singer was found lifeless by his wife when she was waking the 56-year-old Diaz from his nap.
His family took the singer to a local hospital where doctors declared Diaz dead.
“We still don’t know what could have happened,” Elver Diaz, the singer’s brother, told press.
The career of Latin Grammy winning “El Cacique de La Junta” (the Chieftain of La Junta) has often been tarnished with scandals involving drug consumption, failed contract obligations and even homicide.
The singer was born in La Junta, a village in Colombia’s most northern La Guajira state. Born from impoverished parents, Diaz took up music at an early age and recorded his first song in 1975 when he was 18.
The singer was sentenced to prison in 2002 after a judge ruled he had been complicit in the death of a woman at a party where Diaz was present. The victim, alleged to be the singer’s lover, died of asphyxiation.
Fans feared for Diaz’ life twice in 2011 when he came down with pneumonia and hoax reports about a fatal car accident emerged.
In his nearly 30-year-long career, Diaz recorded more than 35 albums.