Naomi Judd dies at 76

No cause of death has been revealed

Naomi Judd has died at the age of 76 outside of Nashville. Judd was one half of the Grammy-winning The Judds with daughter Wynonna. Both Wynonna and sister Ashley Judd announced the news in a joint statement on Saturday (Apr 30th).

“Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness,” their statement reads. “We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory.”

Her husband, Larry Strickland, of 32 years will not be making any further statements. Naomi Judd’s family request privacy during this heartbreaking time. No additional information will be released at this time.

The elder Judd has been outspoken about battling mental illness, something that left her and Wynonna estranged for a time.

Earlier this month, The Judds announced their first tour in over a decade called The Final Tour. The 10 date trek was set to kick off this fall and feature Martina McBride as support.

The Judds, one of the most successful duos in country music history, were set to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame tomorrow (Sun, May 1st) in Nashville. The organization will continue with the ceremony which was to see the mother-daughter duo walk the red carpet beforehand. The red carpet event has been canceled out of respect of Judd’s passing.

“We are shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Naomi Judd, who enters the Country Music Hall of Fame tomorrow as a member of mother-daughter duo The Judds,” shares Kyle Young, CEO, Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. “Naomi overcame incredible adversity on her way to a significant place in music history. Her triumphant life story overshadows today’s tragic news. Her family has asked that we continue with The Judds’ official Hall of Fame induction on Sunday. We will do so, with heavy hearts and weighted minds. Naomi and daughter Wynonna’s music will endure.”

“The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum joins family and fans in grieving the sudden loss of Naomi Judd. Following the wishes of the Judd family, the museum will move forward with the Medallion Ceremony on Sunday, May 1, with Wynonna planning on being in attendance,” the Hall notes.

On April 11th, the duo made a triumphant return to the CMT Music Awards in which they performed their international hit and chart-topping single, “Love Can Build A Bridge” with the iconic landmark as their background.

Wynonna and Naomi Judd brought a fresh acoustic sound to country music, with unmistakable harmonies surrounding Wynonna’s powerful lead vocals. The Judds are often celebrated for a rarely-interrupted stretch of 14 No. 1 hits when every single of theirs released by RCA landed in the Billboard Top 10; and a career that defined what it means to be individualists in the music business. The Judds dominated touring in the 80s with 20 Top 10 hits, have sold more than 20 million albums and blazed a trail for duos and women who have followed them. Together, The Judds have 16 Gold, Platinum, and multi-Platinum albums and longform videos, led by 2x Platinum albums Why Not Me and The Judds Greatest Hits. Their stripped-back style revived the popularity of acoustic sounds in country music and opened up the genre for more traditional approaches.

In October 1990, Naomi announced her retirement from performing due to Hepatitis C. That retirement would come after the 124-date Love Can Build a Bridge Farewell Tour, which wrapped December 4, 1991, at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, TN.

Naomi focused on her health and beat the disease. She’s written​ ​several​ ​New​ ​York​ ​Times​ ​best-selling​ ​books​ ​and​ ​has become​ ​a​ ​popular​ ​motivational speaker.​

Naomi and Wynonna have occasionally reunited over the years, notably for the 1994 Super Bowl halftime show, a 2000 reunion tour, a 2008 performance at the Stagecoach Festival and a 29-date Last Encore Tour from 2010-2011. In 2021, they received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Many celebs have shared their condolences and memories of Judd on social media.

Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn

Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites. Email: