Gospel legend Andrae Crouch has died, according to reports. Credited as “the father of modern gospel music,” his career spanned over 50 years. He was 72.
Crouch died Thursday at Northridge Hospital Medical Center in California almost a week after he was hospitalized for a heart attack. In December he was hospitalized for pneumonia and congestive heart failure.
“Today my twin brother, womb-mate and best friend went home to be with the Lord,” said Crouch’s twin sister Sandra in a statement. “Please keep me, my family and our church family in your prayers. I tried to keep him here but God loved him best.”
With his career starting in the early 1960s, Crouch formed several gospel singing groups. He won seven Grammys with his last in 1994 for Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album. He also won GMA Dove, Billboard, ASCAP and NAACP Awards.
Crouch did music for films including “The Color Purple” and served as arranger and choral conductor for Disney’s “The Lion King.” He also worked with Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, Ringo Starr and Madonna.
Some of Crouch’s most famous song include The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power, My Tribute (To God Be the Glory) and Soon and Very Soon. A dedicated Christian, Crouch and his twin sister served as pastors of at the New Christ Memorial Church in San Fernando, Calif. •