RIP: Prince protégé and R&B singer Vanity (Denise Katrina Matthews) dies at 57

Vanity, the former Prince protégé who walked away from music to focus on evangelism, has died at the age of 57.

TMZ reports that the singer, born Denise Katrina Matthews, died in a California hospital earlier today after an extended battle with kidney failure and recent abdominal illness.

Vanity is perhaps best known as the lead singer of ’80s girl group Vanity 6, who had a minor hit in 1982 with the Prince produced funk/R&B track “Nasty Girl”. She also had roles in ’80s films like The Last Dragon and Action Jackson, but in the ’90s distanced herself from music to focus on religion.

More from TMZ:

“A few months ago she set up a GoFundMe page, and said she’d been diagnosed with sclerosing encapsulating peritonitis — an inflammation of the small intestines. She also battled crack addiction in the ’90s, and after a 1994 OD her kidneys were shot. She had to undergo nearly daily dialysis treatments.

She eventually ditched Hollywood, quit drugs and became a born-again Christian in the mid ’90s. She remained active in her local church up until her death. We’re told she was in church on Saturday evening and told the congregation she was “ready to go home.”

Longtime friend Sheila E tweeted out her condolences earlier today…

Watch some of Vanity’s best performances below…

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