Joni Sledge, Member of “We Are Family” Hitmakers Sister Sledge, Dies at 60

Joni Sledge, the second eldest sister in the hit pop group Sister Sledge, has died.

A representative of the band said Joni passed away at home in Phoenix, Arizona, Friday afternoon (March 10). She was 60 years old.

Her cause of death has not been disclosed.

A statement issued by her family said:

Yesterday, numbness fell upon our family. Pray for us as we weep for the loss of our sister, mother, aunt, niece and cousin Joni Sledge. We thank you for privacy as we hurt for her presence, but also for embracing her radiance and the sincerity with which she loved life.

Debbie Sledge , Kathy Sledge, Kim Sledge and Joni Sledge of the vocal group 'Sister Sledge' pose for a portrait in circa 1973
Debbie Sledge , Kathy Sledge, Kim Sledge and Joni Sledge of the vocal group ‘Sister Sledge’ pose for a portrait in circa 1973

Sister Sledge formed in 1971 and went on to record such hits as “We Are Family,” “He’s the Greatest Dancer,” “Frankie” and more.

The Grammy-nominated “We Are Family,” released in 1979, peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100; the song also topped the R&B and disco charts. The album of the same name reached No. 3 on the Billboard 200.

Recording the track ‘We Are Family’ was like a one-take party — we were just dancing and playing around and hanging out in the studio when we did it.

– Joni Sledge.

Joni is survived by her son, Thaddeus, and sisters Debbie, Kim and Kathy.

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Sisters (l to r.) Kim, Kathy, Debbie and Joni Sledge are pictured in 1973. (MICHAEL OCHS ARCHIVES/GETTY IMAGES)
Sisters (l to r.) Kim, Kathy, Debbie and Joni Sledge are pictured in 1973. (MICHAEL OCHS ARCHIVES/GETTY IMAGES)

// Billboard

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