Australian soul singer Renee Geyer — who shot to fame in the 1970s and became known for her husky vocals — has died, aged 69 from complications following hip surgery in a Geelong Hospital. Renee was discovered to have inoperable lung cancer while being treated in hospital.

Renee Geyer was born in Melbourne in 1953 and began a career in the 1970s that spanned more than five decades.

She is known for her husky vocals, and worked with international stars including Sting, Chaka Khan and Joe Cocker.

Geyer was inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2005.

The Melbourne-born singer rose to fame in the 1970s, spending the first few years of the decade moving between different bands, including jazz-rock group Sun, with whom she recorded the album Sun 1972.

She launched her solo career with a self-titled album in 1973.

Geyer’s highest-charting single, Heading in the Right Direction, was released in 1975.

Her record label Mushroom Records said in a statement that “Just last month, Renee sang to a full house and was looking forward to another busy year ahead doing what she loved most. She lived her life as she performed – to the fullest – and her passing leaves a giant void in the Australian music industry.”

Vale Renee Geyer