Singer and actress Shonka Dukureh has died at the age of 44.
She was well known for her portrayal of blues icon Willie Mae "Big Mama" Thornton in Baz Luhrmann's Elvis.
Charlotte, North Carolina native found dead in Nashville apartment on July 21.
The reason for the death is still unknown.
Charlotte native Dukureh moved to Nashville to pursue theatre at Fisk University.
She was a self-taught singer
Nick Cave, Mike Farris, Pete Rock, and Smoke Dza were among the musicians she collaborated with.
The actress and singer got praise for her role as Thornton in Elvis, which came out earlier this summer.
on Instagram, "Today, a special light went out, and everyone in the
Elvis movie family is devastated by the loss of Shonka Dukureh."
In an Instagram story, Doja Cat paid tribute to the performer by writing, "Rest in peace, Shonka. You had a great talent that was taken from us too soon.