Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Funk legend Maurice White of Earth, Wind & Fire dead at 74

06 February 2016, 18:34

New York - Earth, Wind & Fire founder Maurice White, who broke racial barriers by building a wide following for pop takes on funk and R&B, has died. He was 74.

His death is the latest in a string of prominent musicians who have passed away since the start of 2016.

Earth, Wind & Fire triumphed with a string of hits in the 1970s including "September," "Shining Star," "After the Love Has Gone" and "Boogie Wonderland."

White, who suffered for years from Parkinson's disease, forcing him to stop touring, died Wednesday at his home in Los Angeles, his brother and a representative for the band said.

"My brother, hero and best friend Maurice White passed away peacefully last night in his sleep," his brother and bandmate Verdine White wrote Thursday on Facebook.

"While the world has lost another great musician and legend, our family asks that our privacy is respected as we start what will be a very difficult and life-changing transition in our lives."

Maurice White formed Earth, Wind & Fire in Chicago in 1969 and quickly became known for his skill at songwriting as he crafted intricate and readily danceable tunes that borrowed heavily from the city's R&B scene, but kept a tight structure in line with pop hits.

The band was one of the early acts to break the color barrier in pop music, in 1979 becoming the first African-American act to sell out New York's Madison Square Garden.

While never disappearing completely, Earth, Wind & Fire enjoyed a career resurgence after the election of President Barack Obama, who invited the band as one of the first performers after he entered the White House in 2009.

The band won acclaim not only for their songwriting but for their energetic live shows, led by a forceful horn section and featuring a kalimba, an African percussion instrument played by plucking metal tines.

White, a tenor, alternated on vocals with Philip Bailey, who offered a quickly recognizable falsetto.

Earth, Wind & Fire sold nearly 100 million albums worldwide and was nominated for 17 Grammy Awards, winning six.

Earth, Wind & Fire was due to be honored this year with a Grammy lifetime achievement award.

Coincidentally, the other honorees include Jefferson Airplane, whose co-founder Paul Kantner died last week, also at 74.

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!



Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Leave ODM if you are unhappy, Rai...

Leave ODM if you are not happy, Raila Odinga tells Senator. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Former Assistant Minister joins J...

A former Assistant Minister has quit PNU and joined the Jubilee Party. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
DP Ruto intervenes as Kerio Valle...

DP William Ruto will visit Kerio Valley to try solve never-ending clashes between local residents. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
ODM MP chased down by angry Kibra...

Kibra MP Ken Okoth had a hard time in his constituency after angry youth pelted him with stones. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Prepare for DP Ruto fight in 2022...

An MP has warned that the Kalenjin Community will not stand back and watch as DP Ruto is duped ahead of the 2022 polls. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be careful who you deal with, DP ...

Watch out for your political future, DP William Ruto has been warned. Read more...