Grammy nominated R&B singer Dee Dee Warwick died in an Essex County, NJ, nursing home over the weekend at the age of 63. A cause of death was not announced, though the soul songstress had been in declining health in recent months, according to a statement from family spokesman Kevin Sasaki.
Her older sister, Dionne Warwick, was with her when she died, and later released her own statement to thank fans for their prayers. “This morning [Saturday] at 10:00 my beloved sister Dee Dee made her transition. She went peacefully of which I am grateful,” the elder Warwick wrote on her Web site.
“Again I must say thank you to all that held her in prayer. Knowing that God has given her a merciful release from the pain she suffered with for so very long has been my comfort,” the statement continued. “All that is left to say is that God has another incredible voice to add to His angelic choir. God bless you all for caring.”
Dee Dee Warwick was born in Warwick, NJ, in 1945 and rose to fame in the ’60s with a series of R&B and soul hits. The soul songstress was a two-time Grammy nominee for “Foolish Fool” and “She Didn’t Know (She Kept On Talking).” Warwick was also known for making the original recordings of hits “You’re No Good,” covered by Linda Ronstadt, and “I’m Gonna Make You Love Me,” covered by Diana Ross & the Supremes, among others.
Most recently, the Warwick sisters worked together on Dionne’s musical and acting endeavors. According to reports, Dee Dee Warwick provided background vocals for her sister’s one-woman show “My Music & Me,” as well as lending her voice to the title track of the 2008 recording “Why We Sing.”