BREAKING: Naomi Judd of The Judds Passes Away

Naomi Judd, who with her daughter Wynonna formed the tremendously successful country duo The Judds, died Saturday April 30th from what a press release by Wynonna and her sister, actress Ashley Judd, labeled as “mental illness.” Naomi Judd was 76, the Associated Press reports.


The Judds first came to public attention in 1983 with the release of their debut EP Wynonna & Naomi. Its debut single made it into the Country Top 20, but the follow-up “Mama He’s Crazy” became a smash hit, the duo’s first Number One single.

From that point on, it was hit after hit. Over a six-year period ending in 1990, the duo amassed 14 Number One hits and five platinum albums. The only thing that could stop The Judds was themselves, and in 1991, a hepatitis C diagnosis for Naomi ended The Judds as an active group, although they still sporadically performed.

Naomi Judd was born in Ashland, Kentucky. She had two daughters by her first husband. Wynonna was born when Naomi was 18, Ashley when her mother was 22. Naomi raised the two as a single mother, eventually moving with them to California to attend nursing school. The latter proved to be The Judds break into the music business, as Naomi convinced a record label executive, whose daughter Naomi had cared for as a nurse, to come by the house and listen to her and Wynonna.


The Judds were planning a farewell tour for this fall, and were to be officially inducted into the Country Hall of Fame on Sunday (May 1st).

In addition to their exquisite, familial vocal harmonies and skilled mix of traditional with contemporary country, Naomi’s stunning beauty was a focal point during The Judds relatively brief but triumphant career. Naomi proved being sexy need not reply on excessive suggestiveness apparel-wise or in behavior, but rather simply being who you are.

Godspeed, Naomi Judd.


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