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Cassia Eller, 39; Brazilian Rock Singer Known for Brash Style

January 01, 2002|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Cassia Eller, 39, the Brazilian rock singer known for her provocative behavior on stage, died Saturday in Rio de Janeiro after she was hospitalized in an "agitated and disoriented" state from what one hospital spokesman called "intoxication." Eller had said she used cocaine. An autopsy will be performed.

Eller's fame peaked this year with the sale of about 250,000 copies of her "MTV Unplugged" album and a performance in January's Rock in Rio festival. She sang one of her hits, with the typical lyrics, "I just ask God for a little indecency." She was personally chosen by the Rolling Stones to open for them in Rio on their Bridges to Babylon tour in 1998.

Shunning middle-class Brazilian morals, Eller openly discussed her 13-year relationship with another woman, wore punk haircuts and bared her breasts during a televised performance.

"There is no such thing as right or wrong," she said in a recent interview. "You choose what's good for you, and it ends up working out well."

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