Country music legend Charley Pride dies at 86 from COVID-19 complications in Dallas

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Charley Pride performs onstage during The 54th Annual CMA Awards at Nashville’s Music City Center on Wednesday, November 11, 2020 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Terry Wyatt/Getty Images for CMA)

DALLAS (KXAN) — American country music lost one of its most influential stars on Saturday with the death of Charley Pride in Dallas from COVID-19 complications.

According to a release from Pride’s publicists, Pride died Dec. 12, nearly one month after his final performance Nov. 11 at the Country Music Association Awards.

Pride was born in Sledge, Mississippi, in 1934 and would go on to become country music’s first Black superstar. He’s best known for hits “Kiss An Angel Good Mornin,” “Is Anybody Goin’t to San Antone,” and “Mountain of Love.”

He won the CMA Entertainer of the Year award in 1971, its top male vocalist award in 1971 and 1972 and a Lifetime Achievement Award this year. From 1967 to 1987, Pride achieved 52 Top 10 country hits, won several Grammy awards and became RCA Records’ top-selling country artist.

“No person of color had ever done what he has done,” said Darius Rucker, a fellow Black country musician, in the PBS American Masters film “Charley Pride: I’m Just Me.”

He is survived by three children, five grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, four siblings, and numerous nieces and nephews.

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