Country singer Kenny Rogers dies aged 81

FILE PHOTO: Rogers and his wife Wanda Miller watch the match between Nadal of Spain and Cilic of Croatia at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne
FILE PHOTO: Singer Kenny Rogers and his wife Wanda Miller watch the match between Rafael Nadal of Spain and Marin Cilic of Croatia at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia January 24, 2011. REUTERS/Tim Wimborne/File Photo

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Grammy-winning country singer Kenny Rogers died late on Friday night at the age of 81, his family said on Saturday.

The American singer “passed away peacefully at home from natural causes under the care of hospice and surrounded by his family,” a statement on the singer’s website said.

“The family is planning a small private service at this time out of concern for the national COVID-19 emergency.”

Rogers embarked on a world farewell tour in 2016 but in April 2018 he canceled the last few shows citing “a series of health challenges.”

FILE PHOTO: Singer Kenny Rogers accepts a special Career Achievement Award at the 36th annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Los Angeles, California, U.S., May 9, 2001. REUTERS/File Photo

Rogers, a three-time Grammy winner and a Country Music Hall of Famer, was best known for songs like “The Gambler” and his 1983 duet with Dolly Parton “Islands in the Stream.”

After beginning his career in the 1950s with a jazz group, Rogers went solo in the 1970s and released his break-through single “Lucille” in 1977.