Two-time Grammy Award winning R&B singer James Ingram has died at the age of 66 from unknown causes. The news was confirmed by his friend and collaborator Debbie Allen, who posted an emotional tribute to him on her Twitter page. “I have lost my dearest friend and creative partner James Ingram to the Celestial Choir,” she said. “He will always be cherished, loved and remembered for his genius, his love of family and his humanity. I am blessed to have been so close. We will forever speak his name.”

Ingram’s career spanned three decades, with his biggest hits including songs like “I Don’t Have The Heart” and “Yah Mo B There,” a collaboration with Michael McDonald for which he won his second Grammy in 1984. His first Grammy was for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for his single, “One Hundred Ways.” Throughout his career, he was nominated for a total of 14 Grammy Awards, 2 Academy Awards, and 2 Golden Globes. The Oscar and Golden Globe nominations were for Best Original Song for songs Ingram penned for Beethoven’s 2nd and Junior, respectively.


With news of his death reaching the media, a number of his famous friends and previous collaborators turned to social media to voice their grief. In a statement to New York Times reporter Jon Caramanica, producer Quincy Jones, who co-wrote Michael Jackson‘s hit song “P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing)” with Ingram, said his “heart aches with the news of the passing of my baby brother James Ingram.” Fellow stars Gladys Knight and Clay Aiken also expressed their sorrow, with Aiken thanking Ingram for inspiring him to become a singer.