Music star, Bonnie Pointer of the Pointer Sisters, has passed away

Known for their hit songs, such as I'm So Excited and Jump, Bonnie Pointer was the founding member of the Pointer Sisters.

Bonnie Pointer of the Pointer Sisters has died age 69. She was a Grammy award winner and the founding member of the group but left The Pointer Sisters before their 1980s mega-hits.

Bonnie died from cardiac arrest earlier this week. A statement was released by her publicist, Roger Neal, featuring words from the sisters:

"It is with great sadness that I have to announce to the fans of the Pointer Sisters that my sister, Bonnie died this morning," Anita Pointer said. "Our family is devastated, on behalf of my siblings and I and the entire Pointer family, we ask for your prayers at this time."

The Pointer sisters - Ruth, Anita, Bonnie and June - grew up in Oakland, California, where their father was a minister. They developed their passion for performance singing in his Church.

When she finished school, Bonnie decided to pursue singing professionally and began performing in local clubs and venues. Slowly, she convinced her sisters to join her on stage - starting as a duo with June Pointer and eventually expanding to all four sisters.

Anita said in her statement: "The Pointer Sisters would never have happened had it not been for Bonnie."

After a successful run backing up some major names, such as Boz Scaggs and Elvin Bishop, the retro quartet released their self-titled album in 1972. The song Yes We Can Can was their first hit.

Their second album, That's A Plenty, was extremely varied in musical style. The Pointer Sisters' song Fairytale won them the 1974 Grammy Award for best country vocal performance. The song was co-written by Bonnie.

Bonnie then went on to have a successful solo career, with her 1979 song, Heaven Must Have Sent You reaching no. 11 in the billboard charts. She released four albums as a solo artist, the most recent being Like A Picasso in 2011.

Bonnie Pointer is survived by her brothers Aaron and Fritz and sisters Ruth and Anita Pointer.

Our thoughts go out to her family and loved ones.

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