By Oliver Gettell
February 04, 2016 at 12:00 PM EST
Michael Putland/Getty Images

The Recording Academy has released a statement honoring Maurice White, the Earth, Wind & Fire founder and seven-time Grammy winner who died Wednesday at age 74.

Earth, Wind & Fire are due to recieve the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Grammys later this month, and academy president and CEO Neil Portnow said, “Maurice was the guiding force behind the group’s success and helped create hit songs such as ‘Shining Star,’ ‘September,’ ‘After The Love Has Gone,’ and so many memorable others.

“His unerring instincts as a musician and showman helped propel the band to international stardom, influencing countless fellow musicians in the process,” the statement continued. “While he will be greatly missed, Maurice’s contributions to music will live on. We offer our condolences to his family, friends and creative collaborators.”

This year’s Grammy Awards take place Feb. 15.

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