The man known as the Godfather of Black Music faced a major tragedy when his wife was shot and killed Wednesday in a break-in at the couple's Beverly Hills home, US media reported.
Jacqueline Avant died after being shot by a burglar, who also opened fire on a security guard, according to tabloid website TMZ.
Avant was the wife of Clarence Avant, a music executive feted by the likes of Jay-Z, Diddy, L.A. Reid and Babyface, and lauded by former US president Barack Obama.
The couple's daughter, Nicole Avant, is married to Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos.
TMZ said at least one burglar had got inside the luxury home before opening fire.
It published a picture showing broken glass of a sliding door at the spacious compound.
Police in Beverly Hills, an upmarket area of Los Angeles that is home to the rich and famous in the US entertainment industry, said officers were called to the house after 2:00 am.
"Police units arrived and discovered a victim with a gunshot wound," a press release said.
"The suspect(s) were no longer on the scene. Beverly Hills Fire Department paramedics transported the victim to a local hospital. Unfortunately, the victim did not survive."
A press conference was expected later Wednesday.
TMZ said Jacqueline Avant was 81, and had been married to Clarence Avant for 54 years.
The trailer of ‘Javed Iqbal: The Untold Story of a Serial Killer’ was released on December 8, 2021
Sia's directorial debut 'Music' for criticised for portrayal of autism
Artists signed a letter to urge New York state lawmakers to support the amendments proposed
Harry Styles unveiled the rescheduled dates for UK, Europe and South America tour only
Prince William tends to get messy when eating a certain food item, leaving Kate Middleton frustrated
Harry and Meghan Markle made an inappropriate request to the Queen after their royal wedding