Founding Bon Jovi bassist Alec John Such has died at the age of 70. The news was announced via Bon Jovi’s social media today, June 5. No cause of death has been given.
“We are heartbroken to hear the news of the passing of our dear friend Alec John Such,” Bon Jovi’s statement read. “He was an original. As a founding member of Bon Jovi, Alec was integral to the formation of the band.
“To be honest, we found our way to each other thru him — He was a childhood friend of Tico [Torres] and brought Richie [Sambora] to see us perform. Alec was always wild and full of life. Today these special memories bring a smile to my face and a tear to my eye. We will miss him dearly.”
Born in Yonkers, New York on November 14, 1951, John Such played in a band with Sambora called the Message before joining Bon Jovi. He is credited with helping to eventually bring Sambora and drummer Tico Torres into the band.
John Such played on Bon Jovi’s first five studio albums – 1984’s Bon Jovi, 1985’s 7800° Fahrenheit, 1986’s Slippery When Wet, 1988’s New Jersey and 1992’s Keep the Faith – before departing in 1994.
While there was later revealed to be tensions between John Such and his band mates leading up to his departure, John Such also credited his leaving to burnout from years of recording and touring the world. The bassist was already 31 when he joined Bon Jovi, and he told the Asbury Park Press in 2000 (via Variety), “When I was 43, I started to get burned out. It felt like work, and I didn’t want to work. The reason I got into a band to begin with is because I didn’t want to work.”
In the ensuing years John Such stayed out of the public eye, though he joined his former band mates at their 2018 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction, where he stated, “We had so many great times together and we wouldn't be here if it wasn't for those guys. Love them to death and always will."
Bon Jovi shared part of that speech, along with a clip of the New Jersey song “Blood on Blood,” which John Such would occasionally sing at Bon Jovi shows, via their official social media accounts. You can watch the montage, as well as read the band's statement, below.