Country music legend Kenny Rogers who had a series of hits, including Coward of the County and The Gambler, has died at the age of 81.
The Grammy-winning star, whose career spanned six decades, “passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family”, his representative said in a statement.
Rogers, who also enjoyed success in partnership with Dolly Parton, had announced a farewell tour in 2015 but had continued performing until 2017.
The Houston-born singer, known for his trademark husky voice and silver beard, sold tens of millions of records and broke through into the world of pop.
He also gained fame as an actor, starring in TV movies based on The Gambler and other songs, making him a superstar in the 1970s and 80s.
However, despite his crossover success, he always preferred to be thought of as a country singer.
Speaking in 2015, he said: “You either do what everyone else is doing and you do it better, or you do what no one else is doing and you don’t invite comparison.
“And I chose that way because I could never be better than Johnny Cash or Willie or Waylon at what they did.
“So I found something that I could do that didn’t invite comparison to them. And I think people thought it was my desire to change country music. But that was never my issue.”
Source: Sky News
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