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  • Writer's pictureVolume 82 Magazine

Clarence Avant, 'Godfather of Music,' Dies at 92 After Tragic Death of His Wife During Home Invasion

Clarence Avant/IMDB/Netflix

Clarence Avant, known as the "Godfather of Black Music," and former president of Motown Records, died at 92 years old at his Los Angeles home on Sunday. Clarence had an exceptional presence in music as a mentor, chairman, and artist manager with international clients who led music publishing houses.

Clarence built a plethora of relationships across many industries. The 2019 Netflix film The Black Godfather highlights his legacy and career. Avant received tremendous honors during his career, including the Hollywood Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His longevity in the industry allowed him to work with artists of all genres and age groups, going back to the legendary 1950s jazz singer Sarah Vaughan. Vulture said, "He promoted Michael Jackson's Bad Tour and paired the producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis with Janet Jackson for Control. Avant also helped athletes like boxer Muhammad Ali and NFL star Jim Brown transition to entertainment and produced films, including Save the Children." Snoop, Diddy, Baby Face, L.A. Reid, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Kamala Harris, and Jamie Foxx endorsed him on The Black Godfather.

Avant's life turned for the worst in 2021 after a robber killed his wife, Jackie, who was 81 years old, in their home during a home invasion. Thirty-year-old Aariel Maynor was sentenced to 190 years in prison last year for the murder. Trial evidence showed that Aariel planned the robbery and shot elderly Jackie with an AR-15 rifle.

Jacquline & Clarence Avant/Shutterstock

Clarence and Jackie shared two children, Nicole and Alex Avant, who also work in the entertainment industry. Many artists have shared their appreciation and condolences

online about the Avant family following Clarence's death.

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