Tommy DeBarge, Member of R&B Band Switch Dead at 64. Cause of Death Unknown.

by Jhanaya Belle

October 22, 2021

Musician and band member of DeBarge Family, Tommy DeBarge, has recently died. Confirming the news to TMZ, DeBarge was 64-years-old.

The 64-year-old, who was also a vocalist and bass guitarist of the late 70’s R&B/Funk music band, Switch, passed away on Thursday.

The cause of death has not been confirmed. According to the surviving daughter of the late “There’ll Never Be” singer, Marina DeBarge, confirmed to TMZ that her father suffered from kidney and liver disease. He also battled with COVID-19 earlier this year.

The Michigan native has been hospitalized a few weeks ago where he would later pass away.

Marina states that her father never complained about his illness or his pain. She said she spoke with DeBarge as recently as Wednesday.

The third-eldest, along with his older brother Bobby DeBarge, reaped musical success while being signed to Motown Records with the R&B band Switch in the 1970s.

The band’s single “There’ll Never Be” was an R&B Top 10 hit. The band inspired other musical acts after them, including Mint ConditionTony!, Toni!, Toné! and even their younger siblings who made up the group known by the family’s surname, DeBarge.

DeBarge’s sister Bunny DeBarge reacted to her brother’s death in a Facebook post, sharing a video of a still image of Tommy DeBarge playing a guitar.

“Tommy has gained his wings,” she wrote.

Social media also quickly reacted to the news of DeBarge’s passing.

One fan tweeted the message “Awweee man!! This sucks!!,” with a throwback clip of DeBarge performing Switch’s 1979’s song “I Call Your Name.”

Photo by: ABC Photo Archives / Contributor

Author Dr. Margena A. Christian states “Tommy DeBarge could wear out a bass!”

The author continues “I last saw him when filming Unsung’s Switch episode in 2017. He made it to the set but his body was too fatigued after dialysis. Sending love and light to the DeBarge family. If able, please read his memoir. Powerful story about forgiveness.”

Our thoughts and prayers are with DeBarge’s loved ones at this time. 

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