Country music star Kenny Rogers dies

Kenny Rogers in 2016

Country music icon Kenny Rogers has died, aged 81.

According to a representative, the singer-songwriter peacefully passed away on Friday night from natural causes "under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family".

After launching his career in the 1950s, Rogers rose to fame in the '70s and '80s with his signature song The Gambler, which won him a Grammy Award in 1980.

His other big hits included Lady, Lucille, She Believes in Me, Through the Years, as well as his duet with Dolly Parton, Islands in the Stream.

The Texas native was a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, a six-time Country Music Association (CMA) Awards winner, and a three-time Grammy Awards winner.

"Country Music has lost the great Kenny Rogers, who has forever left a mark on Country Music's history. His family and friends are in our thoughts during this difficult time," a CMA spokesperson posted on Twitter after the news broke.

Rogers's family is planning to hold a small private funeral service due to the concern over the coronavirus crisis.

"They look forward to celebrating Kenny's life publicly with his friends and fans at a later date," the rep added.

Rogers was married five times and had five children.

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