Thu, Dec 8, 2016 | updated 11:33 PM IST

Soul and funk star Sharon Jones dies of cancer at 60

Updated: Nov 19, 2016 10:31 IST

Washington D.C. [USA], Nov. 19 (ANI): American soul and funk veteran Sharon Jones passed away on November 18 aged 60 after a "heroic battle" with pancreatic cancer.

A statement was posted on the website of Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, her longtime backing band, reading, "We are deeply saddened to announce that Sharon Jones has passed away after a heroic battle against pancreatic cancer. She was surrounded by her loved ones, including the Dap-Kings."

Before her departure, the fiery soul singer, who spent decades in obscurity before becoming a Grammy-nominated soul and funk vocalist with the band, described her medical struggles and why she agreed to the new documentary, 'Miss Sharon Jones!'

"I'm not trying to ride anybody's coattails," the 'I'll Still Be True' singer said in 2008. "I'm just doing my thing and people are coming to us."

Doctors diagnosed Jones with stage two pancreatic cancer in 2013 and removed the singer's gallbladder, the head of her pancreas and 18 inches of her small intestine.

Nine months later, she went into remission, but announced that the cancer had returned at the premiere of the documentary. The cancer would be elevated to stage four, with tumors spreading to her lung, liver and lymph nodes.

Born Sharon Lafaye Jones on May 4, 1956 in Augusta, the 'This Land Is Your Land' crooner was the youngest of six kids. She started numerous funk groups in the 1970s, earning extra money by performing in wedding bands and singing gospel music.

In 1996, Jones recorded numerous songs as a back-up singer for 'Desco Records' and released 'Damn It's Hot' her first song as a frontwoman at the age of 40. (ANI)