Tommy DeBarge, member of the R&B/funk band Switch and part of the music industry’s famed DeBarge family has died at the age of 64 after suffering from liver and kidney failure
Thomas Keith DeBarge, known as Tommy DeBarge, member of the R&B/funk band Switch and part of the music industry’s famed DeBarge family has died.
The singer passed away at the age of 64 in the hospital on Thursday, according to TMZ.
A family member told the outlet that Tommy suffered from liver and kidney failure over the years, but recently took a turn for the worse.
Tommy’s sister Bunny took to Facebook to share the news of his death, writing: “Prayers for my family we lost Tommy! He has gone to be with the Lord!”
Tommy rose to fame in the band Switch in the mid to late ’70s, after founding the band with his brother Bobby DeBarge.
The group recorded hits such as There’ll Never Be, I Call Your Name and Love Over & Over Again.
The band was originally made up of Tommy, Bobby, Gregory Williams, Phillip Ingram, Eddie Fluellen and Jody Sims.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, El, Mark, Randy, and Bunny.
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).
Sadly, Bobby passed away died of AIDS-related complications in Grand Rapids, Michigan on August 16, 1995 at age 39.
Tommy’s fans took to Twitter following the news of his death to give their condolences.
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 someone else.
A fourth admirer penned: “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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