Alec John Such, founding bassist of Bon Jovi, dies aged 70

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Alec John Such

(Image credit: Koh Hasebe/Shinko Music/Getty Images)

Alec John Such, a founding member and former bass player of iconic rock band Bon Jovi, has passed away at the age of 70.

The news was confirmed via a statement posted to Bon Jovi’s official Twitter account. A cause of death has not been announced.

“We are heartbroken to hear the news of the passing of our dear friend Alec John Such,” the statement said. “He was an original. As a founding member of Bon Jovi, Alex was integral to the formation of the band. 

“To be honest, we found our way to each other through him,” it continued. “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 those special memories being [a] smile to my face and a tear to my eye. We’ll miss him dearly.”

Alec, you will be missed pic.twitter.com/ilfTeYyQhRJune 5, 2022

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Born in 1952 in Yonkers, New York, Such was an influential force behind the formation of Bon Jovi. Having honed his craft playing in a band called The Message, Such would later receive a call from an early Bon Jovi lineup – then comprising only Jon Bon Jovi and keyboardist David Bryan – to join as the band’s bassist.

After a turbulent few months, the majority of the band’s lineup was eventually solidified thanks to Such, who tapped Tico Torres and Richie Sambora to fill the drummer and rhythm guitar positions, respectively. As of today, Torres still remains a core member of the group.

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Throughout his time with Bon Jovi, Such contributed to five studio albums. His first LP with Bon Jovi, their 1984 self-titled debut, contained the band’s breakout track, Runaway. Such’s low-end contributions were also found on follow-up efforts 7800° Fahrenheit (1985) and Slippery When Wet (1986), the latter of which was an instant commercial success.

It contained some of the band’s most well-known songs, including You Give Love A Bad Name, Raise Your Hands, Wanted Dead Or Alive and Livin’ On A Prayer, all of which showcase Such’s keen ear and commanding low-end prowess.

Two years later, Bon Jovi returned to the studio for New Jersey (1988), which was equally successful: thanks in part to Such’s captivating grooves, driving hair metal-esque basslines and speaker-rumbling constructs – evidenced from the popular Bad MedicineNew Jersey produced five Billboard top ten hits.

Such would contribute to one last album, 1992’s Keep The Faith, before leaving the band in 1994. 

Though Such never rekindled his in-studio musical relationship with the Bon Jovi crew, the bassist did make an appearance for the band’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2018, during which he reflected upon his time with the band.

“When Jon Bon Jovi called me up and asked me to be in his band many years ago, I soon realized how serious he was and he had a vision that he wanted to bring us to, and I am too happy to have been a part of that vision,” Such said at the time. 

“These guys are the best. 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.”

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Along with their statement, Bon Jovi posted a montage of Such, which was set to the song Blood On Blood – a track from New Jersey that Such would occasionally take lead vocals for during live shows.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a News Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.

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