The two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Famer musician became a star in the mid-1960s with the seminal folk-rock group The Byrds, known for such hits as "Turn! Turn! Turn!” and “Mr. Tambourine Man".

Crosby was known for his alternative guitar tunings, lush harmonies and abstract lyrics.
Crosby was known for his alternative guitar tunings, lush harmonies and abstract lyrics. (Diane Bondareff / AP Archive)

David Crosby, the trailblazing singer-songwriter whose time with The Byrds and later Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young expanded rock's range, has died, US media reported. He was 81.

Variety first reported the news, citing the singer's wife, Jan Dance, who said Crosby died following "a long illness." Rolling Stone later cited a source close to the musician as confirming his death.

"Although he is no longer here with us, his humanity and kind soul will continue to guide and inspire us. His legacy will continue to live on through his legendary music," read his wife's statement.

"Peace, love, and harmony to all who knew David and those he touched. We will miss him dearly."

The two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Famer - known as much for his alternative guitar tunings, lush harmonies and abstract lyrics as for his pacifist activism, brutal honesty and living dangerously - remained a prolific artist throughout his life.

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Tributes pouring in

Over the course of six decades in the music industry, the vocalist, guitarist, and composer at the forefront of countercultural rock penned a rich array of heartfelt ballads and knife-edged bangers.

Tributes quickly poured in honouring the musician famous for his walrus moustache.

"I don't know what to say other than I'm heartbroken to hear about David Crosby," tweeted Brian Wilson, co-founder of the Beach Boys. 

"David was an unbelievable talent - such a great singer and songwriter. And a wonderful person."

Rocker Jason Isbell chimed in: "Grateful for the time we had with David Crosby. We'll miss him a lot."

READ MORE: English guitar virtuoso Jeff Beck dies at 78

Source: TRTWorld and agencies