Joni Sledge, singer in the famous disco group Sister Sledge, has passed away at 60. Her publicists released a statement to Reuters confirming that she was found unconscious in her Phoenix home. A cause of death wasn’t immediately available.
The Philadelphia native sang on Sister Sledge songs like “He’s The Greatest Dancer” and “Lost in the Music.” The group’s biggest hit was “We Are Family,” which peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1979. Sister Sledge’s music has been sampled over 150 times, appearing on songs like Junior Jack’s “My Feeling” and Skyzoo and 9th Wonder’s “Stop Fooling Yourself.”
Most famously, Will Smith used portions of their track “He’s The Greatest Dancer” on his 1997 hit “Gettin’ Jiggy wit It.” The song peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was certified Gold. West coast rapper WC also name-drops Sister Sledge on his 1998 song “Better Days”:
No jealousy, we all family like Sister Sledge
Joni mostly sang background vocals for Sister Sledge, but was featured as the lead singer on their 1980 song “Reach Your Peak.”
You can catch up on the lyrics to Sister Sledge’s biggest hits on Genius now.