Crossover country superstar Kenny Rogers dies at 81

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Kenny Rogers (Photo: MGN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Kenny Rogers, who embodied “The Gambler” persona and whose musical career spanned jazz, folk, country and pop, has died at 81.

A representative says Rogers died at home in Georgia on Friday night. The Houston-born balladeer with a husky voice had hits like “Lucille,” “Lady” and “Islands in the Stream” with Dolly Parton.

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He sold tens of millions of records and was the star of TV movies, making him a superstar in the late ‘70s and ’80s.

With his silver beard and folksy charm, the Grammy winner excelled as a musical stylist for more than six decades.

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