Wadih al-Safi, legendary Lebanese singer and composer, renowned throughout the Arab word, has died at the age of 92.

Al-Safi, whose real name was Wadih Francis, passed away on Friday after falling ill while staying with his son in  Manouriya, near Beirut. "He was immediately taken to  hospital, where he died," said the National News Agency of Lebanon.

He was often referred to as the "voice of Lebanon" and belonged to a golden age for music in his country and the wider Arab region, alongside Lebanese diva Fairuz.

Al-Safi held Lebanese, French and Brazilian nationalities, and contributed to the revitalisation of Lebanese music, a movement led by the Rahbani brothers.

During a career that spanned seven decades and a catalogue of some 3,000 songs, al-Safi worked with a string of legendary Arab composers and singers such as Egypt’s late Mohammed Abdul-Wahhab and the late Syrian-Egyptian Farid al-Atrash. "It is impossible that someone should be endowed with such a voice," Abdel Wahab once said.

He was married with four sons and two daughters.

Source: Agencies