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JONI SLEDGE (1956-2017) — HER GROUP GAVE US “WE ARE FAMILY” Dead at 60

Joni Sledge of the group Sister Sledge was found dead in her Phoenix home Friday. According to the Associated Press and the group’s publicist, Biff Warren, she was 60. No cause of death has been determined as of presstime.

 
Sisters Joni, Debbie, Kim and Kathy formed in 1971 in Philadelphia. It took them eight years to break through with a major hit…but when they did, they did it big…and this was by far was their biggest hit…

 
 
“We Are Family” was a #1 R&B hit while peaking at #2 on the pop chart in June, 1979. “Hot Stuff” by Donna Summer kept “We Are Family” out of #1 on the pop chart. “We Are Family” became the theme song of the 1979 baseball World Series champions, the Pittsburgh Pirates.
 
Sister Sledge had 19 R&B hits and broke through with this #9 pop hit in the spring of 1979…
 

 
 
Like “We Are Family,” “He’s The Greatest Dancer” was a #1 R&B hit. Then in 1982, Sister Sledge scored its third of three Top 40 pop hits with a remake of a 1964 #1 hit by Mary Wells…

 
 
 
A Sledge family statement was as follows…“Yesterday, numbness fell upon our family. We are saddened to inform you that our dear sister, mother, aunt and cousin, Joni passed away yesterday. Please pray for us as we weep for this loss. We do know that she is now eternally with Our Lord.”