By Sandra Gonzalez
December 26, 2010 at 12:00 PM EST

R&B singer-songwriter Teena Marie, best known for her songs “Lovergirl” and “Portuguese Love,” has died, her manager tells CNN. She was 54.

Marie (real name Mary Christine Brockert) signed to Motown Records in January 1976 and was famously mentored by Rick James. The four-time Grammy nominee released 13 albums during her career, the most recent being 2009’s Congo Square.

No cause of death has been released.

In a 2004 tribute to the funk legend that ran in EW, Marie wrote about her first encounter with James: “He stood in the doorway for a long while, listening to me sing. At that moment, Rick and I became best friends and musical soulmates.”

More from EW.com: Five essential Teena Marie songs

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