The singer, known for the 70s disco anthem We Are Family, was found dead in her home in Phoenix, Arizona [img]'https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/fdda45a632750e38748c3a41c63f1f658783cb6b/0_0_3767_2260/master/3767.jpg?w=1200&h=630&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&fit=crop&crop=faces%2Centropy&bm=normal&ba=bottom%2Cleft&blend64=aHR0cHM6Ly91cGxvYWRzLmd1aW0uY28udWsvMjAxNi8wNS8yNS9vdmVybGF5LWxvZ28tMTIwMC05MF9vcHQucG5n&s=4abe501fc7ff92579ef2c5e659e5f64f' Joni Sledge, who with her sisters recorded the defining dance anthem We Are Family, has died, the bands representative has said. Sledge, 60, was found dead in her home in Phoenix, Arizona, by a friend on Friday, the bands publicist, Biff Warren, said on Saturday. A cause of death has not been determined. On yesterday, numbness fell upon our family. We welcome your prayers as we weep the loss of our sister, mother, aunt, niece and cousin, read a family statement.
Sledge and her sisters Debbie, Kim and Kathy formed the Sister Sledge in 1971 in Philadelphia, their hometown, but struggled for years before success came. The four of us had been in the music business for eight years and we were frustrated. We were saying: Well, maybe we should go to college and just become lawyers or something other than music, because it really is tough, Sledge told The Guardian in an interview in 2016. But then they met Bernard Edwards and Nile Rodgers of the hit group Chic, and their breakout soon came. The pair wrote and produced their album We Are Family, and soon the women had their first major hit with disco jam Hes The Greatest Dancer, which became a top-10 hit in May 1979. (It would sampled years later for Will Smiths hit Getting Jiggy Wit It.)