Joe Long dead: Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons bassist dies at 79 as band pays tribute

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Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons musician Joseph Louis LaBracio, best known as Joe Long, has died at the age of 79. The bassist’s bandmates announced the sad news in a Facebook post.

The band’s surviving members Valli, 86, and Bob Gaudio, 78, shared a statement, which read: “It is with great sadness that we learned that our dear bandmate, Joe Long, has passed away. 

“We send our deepest condolences to his family, friends, and fans. 

“We will miss Joe.”

It has been reported that Joe died of COVID-19, according to NJ.com.

The Jersey Boys’ official Twitter account also paid tribute to Joe, writing: “Joe Long, a true Jersey boy and bassist with the Four Seasons, has passed away. 

“The #JerseyBoys family sends our condolences to his family and friends, and our thanks to Joe for all the music.”

The band’s iconic music inspired the Jersey Boys Broadway musical, which went on to be released as a feature film.

New Jersey Mayor Chris Bollwage spoke out on the sad news.

 

He said: “I was truly sad to hear of the passing of Joe Long, longtime Elizabeth resident & respected member of the Four Seasons. 

“In 2014, we honored Joe at a street dedication ceremony on High Street, where he grew up, for his local ties as well as the legendary part he played in music. 

“He had an illustrious career and his role in musical history will continue to serve as an inspiration to all. 

“On behalf of the City of Elizabeth, I would like to give our condolences to his family and friends.”

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Joe joined the Four Seasons in 1965 before he decided to leave in the mid 1970s. 

The band rose to fame after releasing number one singles including Big Girls Don’t Cry, Walk Like A Man, and Sherry. 

In his career after exiting the band, Joe formed his own band, LaBracio, in reference to his surname.

He later founded jazz band Jersey Bounce.

The band were previously hit with more sad news after Four Seasons founding member Tommy DeVito died at the age of 92.

The musician battled coronavirus before his death.

Paying tribute to their late bandmate, Valli and Gaudio said: “It is with great sadness that we report that Tommy DeVito, a founding member of The Four Seasons, has passed. 

“We send our love to his family during this most difficult time. 

“He will be missed by all who loved him.”

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