​Nini Nobless of Hi-NRG Canadian duo Lime dies aged 74

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Nini Nobless, formerly known as Denis LePage of Hi-NRG Canadian duo Lime, has passed away aged 74.

A friend of Nini Nobless confirmed her death last week on Facebook, writing: “Denis passed away this morning, August 21, 2023 at the Sacred Heart Hospital from general cancer.”

They continued: “I am devastated. I have never known anyone so brilliant,” adding that they shared some “very rare moments” together. “We had conversations so deep I’m still shaking.”

Nini Nobless found fame under the name Denis LePage in the early 1980s before transitioning, and worked alongside her then-wife, Denyse LePage, together in the Hi-NRG pioneering group Lime.

Lime began in homage to the three-story Montreal nightclub Lime Light, first opened in the ‘70s drawing in a heavily queer audience from the east to west coast. The duo began to work around the sound of both disco and Hi-NRG, a genre that sprung up in Montreal and would cross the Canadian border to the rest of the world by the 1980s.

By 1981, Lime claimed number one in the US dance charts with ‘Your Love’, followed up in 1982 with the Top 10 hit ‘Babe We’re Gonna Love Tonight’.

Nini Nobless also worked under other aliases and musical projects, including The Persuaders, Le Pouls, and Kat Mandu, where she secured a Number 3 hit with the 1979 single ‘The Break’.

Her musical palette ranged from disco to jazz the electro-pop, and created the “equivalent of eight CDs” during her musical career, previous owner of Lime Light, Yvon Lafrance, told La Presse.

Claude Chalifoux, the co-owner of Lime Light, explained: “[She] was a genius. All of the music that Denis did was a smash hit. People went crazy when they’d play ‘Your Love’, ‘You’re My Magician’ and ‘Guilty’.”

Read some tributes for Nini Nobless below.

Gemma Ross is Mixmag’s Assistant Editor, follow her on Twitter

Written by: Tim Hopkins

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