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HomeGeneralGrammy-Winning Gospel Musician Sandra Crouch Dies at 81

Grammy-Winning Gospel Musician Sandra Crouch Dies at 81

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SANDRA CROUCH
Source: New Christ Memorial Church/Youtube

Sandra Crouch, renowned gospel musician and twin sister of the late Andraé Crouch, passed away at the age of 81 on Sunday, March 17, at Northridge Hospital in Northridge, California. 

Her death came as a result of complications from radiation treatment for a non-cancerous brain lesion, according to reports from Billboard. Born on July 1, 1942, in Los Angeles, Sandra and Andraé were raised in a family deeply rooted in ministry, with their parents founding Christ Memorial Church C.O.G.I.C. in 1951.

 The siblings began their musical journey together in the early 1960s as The COGICS, performing alongside friends who shared their passion for music within the church community.

While Andraé ventured into forming the group Andraé Crouch & The Disciples, Sandra made her mark as a percussionist in Hollywood, contributing her talents to various notable projects, including The Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back,” Neil Diamond’s Tap Root Manuscript, and Janis Joplin’s Pearl album.

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In the 1970s, Sandra joined her brother’s group, The Disciples, where she showcased her vocal prowess and co-wrote iconic gospel songs such as “Jesus Is the Answer,” which became a fixture on gospel radio.

The twins’ musical collaborations extended beyond gospel music, as they contributed to Michael Jackson’s History album and performed with him during his iconic Grammy Awards performance of “Man in the Mirror” in 1988.

Additionally, Sandra and Andraé lent their talents to several film soundtracks, including The Color Purple, Free Willy, and The Lion King. Sandra also pursued a successful solo career, releasing three albums in the 1980s, all of which garnered Grammy nominations.

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Her debut solo album, We Sing Praises, earned her a Grammy Award for Best Soul Gospel Performance, Female in 1983. Despite facing challenges within the male-dominated gospel music industry, Sandra continued to make significant contributions to the genre, winning two GMA Dove Awards for traditional gospel albums.

In 1998, Andraé took over their parents’ church, Christ Memorial COGIC, and ordained Sandra as a co-pastor, a move that defied the denomination’s policy against female preachers. Together, they renamed the church New Chris Memorial Church.

Following her brother’s passing in 2015, Sandra assumed the role of senior pastor, leading the congregation with grace and dedication until her recent passing.

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Sandra Crouch’s legacy as a pioneering gospel musician and pastor will be celebrated during a viewing and musical tribute on April 16 at New Christ Memorial Church, followed by a homegoing service on April 17. 

Her profound impact on gospel music and ministry will continue to inspire generations to come, leaving an indelible mark on the hearts of those who were touched by her music and teachings.

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