Earth, Wind & Hearth co-founder Maurice White, seventy four, died in his sleep Thursday morning only a week earlier than his band was to be honored on the Grammy’s with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
He and his brother Verdine created the band in 1969, producing hits resembling “September,” “Boogie Wonderland,” and “After the Love Has Gone.” White was recognized with Parkinson’s in 1992 and was pressured to give up the funk band two years later.
White additionally wrote music for films together with “Coming To America” and “Undercover Brother.” He was inducted into the Songwriters Corridor of Fame in 2010. He collaborated with stars reminiscent of Chaka Khan, Deniece Williams, The Feelings, Barbra Streisand, and Lalah Hathaway.
Brother Verdine stated in a press release: “Whereas the world has misplaced one other nice musician and legend, our household asks that our privateness is revered as we begin what will probably be a really troublesome and life-altering transition in our lives. Thanks in your prayers and nicely needs.”
The band’s official Twitter referenced the hit music “Shining Star” with the quote, “The sunshine is he, shining on you and me.”
Our brother Maurice White handed peacefully in his sleep this morning.
The sunshine is he, shining on you and me. pic.twitter.com/ppWTHKUyG6
— Earth, Wind & Hearth (@EarthWindFire) February 4, 2016
Recording Academy CEO Neil Portnow stated in a press release: “We’re very saddened to study of the passing of seven-time Grammy Award winner Maurice White. A founding member of Earth, Wind & Hearth, who’re receiving our Lifetime Achievement Award this yr, Maurice was the guiding pressure behind the group’s success and helped create hit songs comparable to Shining Star, September, After the Love Has Gone, and so many memorable others.
“His unerring instincts as a musician and showman helped propel the band to worldwide stardom, influencing numerous fellow musicians within the course of. Whereas he will probably be tremendously missed, Maurice’s contributions to music will stay on.”
Stylish star Nile Rodgers referred to as White “one of the crucial superb innovators of all time.”
A Tribe Referred to as Quest rapper Q-Tip added, “Rattling all of my Heroes are shifting on…. EWF was the blueprint for tribe… R.I.P. To the genius that was Maurice White.”
The Roots drummer Questlove added, “Maurice was the whole lot…..Every little thing.”
MC Hammer wrote: RIP #MauriceWhite “Maintain Your Head to the Sky” …………. Earth, Wind & Hearth.”
Julian Lennon stated: “R.I.P. Maurice… Yet one more superbly gifted soul leaves us. I can not sustain.. Prayers to his Household & Associates.”
Queen Latifah tweeted: “Thank You Maurice White for the Present of Your Music!”
Bette Midler added: “Maurice White, founding member of Earth, Wind and Hearth, has died. Nice music, power, nice spirit. The Lord should want a band up there.”