Kenny Rankin, a beloved iconic singer-songwriter and musician, died Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

]]>KennyRank_Marty_14242418_600 The cause of death was lung cancer, reportedly diagnosed just three weeks ago.

His career spanned more than five decades.

He played in Bob Dylan's backup band on the influential 1965 album "Bringing It All Back Home."

He also spent years on the road opening for comedian George Carlin.

Here are some of his past statements from his website:

"My interpretation of the songs is purely emotional," he explains. "We've all experienced disappointment and heartache, and that's what I draw upon. When I sing 'A Song for You' and 'Where Do You Start?' or 'She Was Too Good to Me,' I'm really hurting for the people in the song. I never change lyrics, because when I select a song it's usually because of how the lyric impacts me. I've been accused of straying from the melody, but when I sing I'm feeling, not thinking."

"When I started, I was very young and felt like I was the center of the universe. But over the years I've come to understand that it's not about me, it's about the work, and about having the opportunity to do good work. If you do anything for any length of time, it's inevitable that you're gonna have ups and downs."

Kenny's music will live on. And we are grateful for his genius.

— Elizabeth Snead

Photos: WireImage/

Posted by:Elizabeth Snead