Soul Train’s Don Cornelius is dead
Los Angeles (CNN) — Don Cornelius, the founder of the “Soul Train” television show, was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to his head today, authorities said. He was 75.
Cornelius died of a gunshot wound at a house on Mulholland Drive, said Los Angeles police Officer Tenesha Dodine. Police responded to the call about 4 a.m. Dodine said.
Cornelius was pronounced dead at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, according to Lt. Larry Dietz of the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office.
Los Angeles police investigators reported to the coroner that Cornelius died from a “self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head,” coroner’s Assistant Chief Ed Winter said. The coroner’s office will perform an autopsy to confirm the cause of death.
Cornelius created a pilot for “Soul Train” using $400 of his own money, according to the website biography.com. The show was named after a promotional event he put together in 1969, the site said.
Music producer Quincy Jones expressed shock and deep sadness in a written statement to CNN.
“Don was a visionary pioneer and a giant in our business,” Jones said. “Before MTV there was ‘Soul Train,’ that will be the great legacy of Don Cornelius. His contributions to television, music and our culture as a whole will never be matched.”