According to soultracks.com, the singer died in Los Angeles and was working on her first solo album, including the single I'm Not Mad at You that was released last summer.
Howard, sisters Vernessa and Barbara Mitchell and Michelle Martin were discovered while performing in their hometown of Pasadena, CA by Gwen Gordy Fuqua, a key member of Motown A&R, signing with the label in 1977. The Mitchell sisters had a singing background while Howard and Martin came from the dancing world.
Motown executives were positioning the group to be the "new Supremes" and they hit later that year with You Can't Turn Me Off (In the Middle of Turning Me On) which went to number 2 on the R&B and 12 on the Pop charts. It would be their one and only big hit with 1978's Love Is All You Need being the closest followup (#20 R&B/#89 Pop). The group broke up in 1983.