American country music icon Kenny Rogers has “passed away peacefully at home from natural causes”, a family representative confirmed today. The world-famous musician behind timeless hits like The Gambler, Sweet Music Man, Lucille, and of course, Islands in the Stream, died last night at 10.25pm (local time) at the age of 81.
If you don’t know who Kenny Rogers is, you certainly know his music. In fact, I’d put money on the fact that most of you have blared out Islands in the Stream sloppily at last orders.
Treasure the memory, TBH; none of us will be doing that anytime soon unless it’s on FaceTime or Houseparty. Sigh.
A statement from the Rogers family states that a public celebration of Kenny’s life and career will be held at a later date; assumedly, when the coronavirus pandemic is more under control.
The family’s statement reads:
“The Rogers family is sad to announce that Kenny Rogers passed away last night at 10.25pm at the age of 81. Rogers passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family.
“The family is planning a small private service at this time out of concern for the national Covid-19 emergency. They look forward to celebrating Kenny’s life publicly with his friends and fans at a later date.”
Throughout his industrious and lengthy career (Rogers’s music career began in the late 1950s) Rogers collaborated with the likes of Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Sheena Easton, Dottie West and Lionel Richie.
Although he undoubtedly was most successful with country audiences in the U.S., Rogers charted more than 120 hit singles across various music genres and sold over 100 million records worldwide.
He is widely considered one of the best-selling music artists of all time.
The man is a musical icon and the industry has been understandably shaken by this tragic news. Members of the music and entertainment industries – including Dolly Parton – have been taking to social media over the last few hours to pay tribute to the late country music star in the wake of the sad news.
Rogers last performed publicly at a ‘farewell’ concert in Nashville in 2017.
‘The Gambler’ has left the table and we will miss him wholeheartedly.
Images via Twitter and Getty
Having worked in children's media and publishing for almost a decade, Ben is thoroughly excited to now be able to swear in stories and features. He is such a big fan of Disney and Horror films that he started an LGBTQ+ podcast called 'Once Upon A Scream'. His mum listens. You can contact Ben at [email protected] Twitter: @PulsfordBen / Instagram: @thebenmidlerFollow