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    Soviet-era pop star Magomayev buried in Azerbaijan

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    Legendary Soviet-era baritone Muslim Magomayev, who died after a long illness at the age of 66 on Saturday, was buried on Wednesday in Baku, the capital of his native Azerbaijan.

    BAKU, October 29 (RIA Novosti) - Legendary Soviet-era baritone Muslim Magomayev, who died after a long illness at the age of 66 on Saturday, was buried on Wednesday in Baku, the capital of his native Azerbaijan.

    Thousands of people attended his funeral, including Azerbaijan's newly inaugurated president, Ilham Aliyev.

    Magomayev was laid to rest in the cemetery where his father, Muslim Magomayev, Sr., and Aliyev's father, former president, Heydar Aliyev, are buried, as well as prominent scientists, artists, politicians and statesmen.

    Magomayev enjoyed enormous popularity as a pop singer, gathering huge audiences and selling millions of records across the Soviet Union. He remains an idol for people of all ages in former Soviet republics.

    The singer's repertoire included more than 600 pieces, including Russian art songs, classical, pop and Neapolitan music. He starred in a few screen musicals, and composed more than 20 songs and soundtracks. Magomayev also authored a book about the world-famous U.S. tenor, Mario Lanza.

    One of minor planets in the Solar System's asteroid belt was named 4980 Magomaev in 1997.

    Mikhail Shvydkoi, a former Russian culture minister, who attended the funeral on behalf of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, said Magomayev combined a love of Azerbaijan with a love of Russia.

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