The Urban Buzz sends heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and fans of Clarence Avant. The Godfather of Black Entertainment passed away at age 92.

Clarence Avant, legendary music executive and film producer, has died.

Avant, who was hailed as godfather of Black entertainment, died at his home in Los Angeles, California, on Sunday, his family confirmed to PEOPLE. 

“It is with a heavy heart that the Avant/Sarandos family announce the passing of Clarence Alexander Avant,” Avant’s children Nicole and Alex and son-in-law Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “Through his revolutionary business leadership, Clarence became affectionately known as ‘The Black Godfather’ in the worlds of music, entertainment, politics, and sports.”

“Clarence leaves behind a loving family and a sea of friends and associates that have changed the world and will continue to change the world for generations to come. The joy of his legacy eases the sorrow of our loss,” the statement concluded.

North Carolina native Avant began his career in the 1960s managing upcoming blues artists including Little Willie John, jazz organist Jimmy Smith and jazz producer Creed Taylor, whom he scored a record breaking deal for with A&M Records. By 1968, he engineered the sale of Stax Records, which closely followed behind the success of Motown Records. 

Avant’s network continued to grow once he moved to Los Angeles in the 1970s and established his own record companies Sussex Records and Tabu Records — both of which are credited for the early formations of hip-hop in their releases. Among the artists Avant worked with are Quincy JonesWhitney HoustonPharrell WilliamsLionel RichieSean ‘Diddy’ Combs, L.A. Reid, Snoop Dogg, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, and Janet Jackson. He also promoted Michael Jackson’s first ever solo “Bad” tour.

Editor’s Note:

I used to work for Clarence Avant alongside Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis. ‘Mr. C,’ as I reffered to him was one of the smartest and most honest people I’ve ever known. If he liked you, you knew it. If he didn’t like you then shame on you. May he Rest in Paradise.