Earth, Wind & Fire founder Maurice White dead at 74

Verdine White, Maurice White, and Philip Bailey of Earth, Wind & Fire perform on the Justin Timberlake and Friends Old School Jam in 201. Frank Micelotta/PictureGrouphoto via AP Photo

NEW YORK – Maurice White, the founder and leader of Earth, Wind & Fire, has died.

White died at home in Los Angeles on Wednesday, said his brother, Verdine White. He was 74.

A former session drummer, White founded Earth, Wind & Fire in the late 1960s. The group sold more than 90 million albums worldwide, displaying a flashy and eclectic musical style that incorporated White’s influences from growing up in Memphis, Tennessee, and at the influential Chicago music labels Chess and Okeh.

The band’s many hits included “September,” ”Shining Star,” a cover of the Beatles’ “Got to Get You into My Life” and “Boogie Wonderland.” Earth, Wind & Fire won six Grammys and was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.

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