Jessi Zazu, frontwoman of Nashville’s genre-bending Those Darlins, has died after a lengthy battle with cancer. She was 28 years old.

According to the Tennesseean, Zazu was diagnosed with cervical cancer more than a year and a half ago, and fought her battle publicly.

"She thought women deserve more respect than they get. That's why she was so open about her experience with cervical cancer,” Zazu’s friend and writer Shelley DuBois tells the Tennesseean. “She wanted other women to know that they weren't alone, that they should listen to their bodies and speak up for themselves without shame if they knew something was wrong.”

Alongwith her bandmates, Zazu formed Those Darlins over a decade ago. The group was part of a revitalization of the city’s indie-rock scene, and earned plenty of attention from the city’s country artists. Earlier this summer, artists like Jason Isbell and the Brothers Osborne performed at The Songs of John Prine, a benefit concert that both celebrated the vinyl release of Prine’s 2010 album Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows, and raised funds to help Zazu and her family pay medical bills.

Jessi Zazu, born Jessi Zazu Wariner, is survived by her parents and two brothers. She was also the niece of country singer Steve Wariner. Details on funeral services have not been announced at this time.

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