A publicist says singer Teena Marie, who made history as Motown's first white act, has died at age 54.

The confirmation came Sunday from publicist Jasmine Vega, who worked with Teena Marie on her last album. Her manager, Mike Gardner, also confirmed her death to CNN.

Marie developed a lasting legacy her silky soul pipes and hits like "Lovergirl," "Square Biz," and "Fire and Desire" with mentor Rick James.

She was known as the "Ivory Queen of Soul," but was certainly not the first white act to sing soul music. However, she was arguably among the most gifted and respected, and was thoroughly embraced by black audiences.