Tommy DeBarge of the R&B and funk band Switch has died at the age of 64 after suffering from liver and kidney failure for several years
Tommy DeBarge has died at the age of 64.
The R&B and funk musician was best known for being a member of the hit ’70s band Switch. He was also part of the music industry’s famed DeBarge family.
His death was confirmed to TMZ by a family member. They told the publication that the singer had suffered from liver and kidney failure over the years, but recently took a turn for the worse.
It was reported that the star was hospitalised several weeks ago and died in hospital Thursday.
Tommy and his band rose to fame in the mid to late ’70s when the y recorded smash hits such as There’ll Never Be, I Call Your Name and Love Over & Over Again.
Tommy was a founding member of the band alongside his brother Bobby.
The band was originally made up of Tommy, his brother Bobby, Gregory Williams, Phillip Ingram, Eddie Fluellen and Jody Sims.
They are said to have had a huge influence on future bands within the genre, including a group called DeBarge which was made up of the duo’s siblings.
Bobby and Tommy left Switch in the 1980s to become the mentors for their younger brothers and sister in DeBarge.
The family band released six albums in the 1980s; The DeBarges (1981), All This Love (1982), In a Special Way (1983), and Rhythm of the Night (1985).
Bobby sadly passed away in 1995 from AIDS-related complications.
Fans took to social media following the news of Tommy’s death to pay their respects.
One fan commented: “Rest In Perfect Peace Tommy DeBarge; a member of the band Switch, and a member of the DeBarge family.
“Tommy now joins his brother Bobby in the heavenly band.”
Another wrote: “Rest in JESUS Tommy! Praying for El, Mark, Randy, Bunny and James #TommyDebarge,” while sharing Switch’s song There’ll Never Be.
“#RIP Tommy DeBarge, you and Bobby reunited,” wrote a third.
A fourth put: “Damn, Tommy Debarge died not too long after I read some of his book. May he rest in peace with his brother Bobby. The Debarge family has been through a lot.”
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