Debra Byrd
Debra Byrd | Photo by Michel Boutefeu/Getty Images

Debra Byrd, ‘American Idol’ And ‘The Voice’ Vocal Coach Dies At 72

Debra Byrd, a celebrated vocal coach recognized for her work on popular TV shows like American Idol, Canadian Idol, and The Voice, has passed away at the age of 72. Byrd who shaped the careers of many aspiring singers, breathed her last in Los Angeles, California, on Tuesday, March 5, as reported by Deadline. However, the exact cause of her demise remains undisclosed.

Oscar-winning singer Jennifer Hudson, who benefited from Byrd’s guidance during her ten-season tenure on American Idol, expressed her grief on social media. “She encouraged and supported us from the very beginning,” Hudson wrote on Instagram. “I am so grateful for everything she taught us. She will be dearly missed, but her legacy lives on through the music of countless artists she influenced during her lifetime. Rest in peace, Debra.”

Debra Byrd – ‘I’ll Never Love This Way Again”

Born on July 19, 1951, in Cleveland, Ohio, Debra Byrd’s journey into the world of music began at Kent State University, further honed through her experiences at Karamu and Dobama Theatres. She gained significant recognition while touring globally as part of Barry Manilow’s esteemed backup group, Ladyflash. Barry Manilow describes her as an irreplaceable friend and expresses profound sadness over her departure. “This is one of the saddest days of my life. I just can’t wrap my mind around the fact that Debra is no longer with me”. He said, ” She was one of the most wonderful friends I’ve ever had. I will miss you forever, my love. -Barry Manilow”

Throughout her career, Debra Byrd collaborated with iconic figures such as Bob Dylan. Debra Byrd additionally functioned as the head of the vocal department at the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, while also serving as an artist in residence at the Berklee College of Music, which further solidified her legacy as a Vocal coach and mentor.

Debra Byrd’s passing leaves a void in the hearts of those she inspired, but her music legacy as a vocal coach and mentor for aspiring musicians will continue to resonate through the countless lives she touched.

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