Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel singer Ralph Tavares dies aged 79

Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel singer Ralph Tavares dies aged 79

Ralph Tavares, singer of Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel and member of the band Tavares, has died at the age of 79.

The late star’s manager shared news of his death on the band’s official Facebook page.

‘To our loyal fans, family and friends, we are saddened to announce that our brother Ralph has passed away,’ a statement read.

‘Please pray for our family during this difficult time. We do know that he is now eternally with our Lord.

‘We thank you in advance for allowing us to mourn privately as a family. We love you and God bless you all. The Tavares family.’

His cause of death has not yet been confirmed.

Tributes have poured in for the late star, who was just days away from his 80th birthday.

One of 10 brothers, Tavares was best known for being in the band Tavares with the younger four of his siblings, Pooch, Chubby, Butch and Tiny.

They were known for iconic songs including Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel and Never Had A Love Like This Before.

The band formed in 1959 while Tavares was in the army, first performing under the name Chubby and the Turnpikes.

For a brief time, future Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer joined the Turnpikes, before leaving to join Steven Tyler’s band in 1970.

In 1965, the musician joined his brothers, as they renamed themselves.

In 1975, the band released their iconic hit It Only Takes A Minute, which was later covered by Take That and sample by Jennifer Lopez, followed by tracks including Heaven Must Be Missing an Angel, and Don’t Take Away the Music.

During their careers, they also opened for the Jackson 5.

1977 saw the band’s success rocket with their version of More Than A Woman for the iconic film Saturday Night Fever.

It won the Grammy Award for album of the year in 1979, and went on to become one of the best-selling albums of all time.

Ralph left the band in 1984 for family reasons, rejoining in 2014 when his brother Pooch suffered a stroke.

Tributes have come in for the star, with one fan writing: ‘Rip Ralph Tavares…loved the song Heaven must be missing an angel.’

‘What a shock for our Cape Verdean Community,’ another said. ‘Rest among our Ancestors, cousin Ralph. Tavares represented our culture & our community..’

One more said: Damn shame. R.I.P. Ralph. Such a great group.’

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