The country singer-songwriter “passed away peacefully at home from natural causes,” his family announced on Twitter.
The country singer-songwriter and actor “passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family” at 10:25 p.m. on Friday.
A small private service will be planned “out of concern for the national COVID-19 emergency,” the family said, adding it would celebrate the Country Music Hall of Fame member’s life “publicly with his friends and fans at a later date.”
Rogers was best-known for ballads including “The Gambler”, “Coward of the Country”, and “Lucille”. He once said he believed his ballads “say what every man wants to say and that every woman wants to hear”.
Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Rogers was the fourth of eight children raised in a poor household. He formed a rockabilly group called The Scholars in school, before going on to study (for a brief period) at the University of Houston, where he played bass in various jazz groups.
“In a career that spanned more than six decades, he left an indelible mark on the history of American music,” the statement read.
“His songs have endeared music lovers and touched the lives of millions around the world. Chart-topping hits like ‘The Gambler,’ ‘Lady,’ ‘Islands In The Stream,’ ‘Lucille,’ ‘She Believes In Me,’ and ‘Through the Years’ are just a handful of Kenny Rogers’ songs that have inspired generations of artists and fans alike.