The Dovells’ Len Barry Dies at 78

– The Dovells‘ original singer Len Barry has died at the age of 78.

The vocalist, who fronted the doo-wop group during its rise to fame in the early 1960s, passed away on Thursday (05Nov20), according to a post shared on the group’s official Facebook page.

A cause of death has yet to be announced, but his old bandmate, Jerry Gross, paid tribute on social media, writing, “We lost one of our original members. Our lead singer from 1960 – 1963… has gone on to Rock ‘n’ Roll heaven.”

“In these trying times that we’re living in, with the politics and the virus, and now one more sad. Very few people know that we did two reunion shows in 1994 in Syracuse (NY) and Hartford (Conn). We had a fabulous time both on stage and in the car between the dates. Between Lenny and Mark, the comedy never stopped. It was the best of times. Great being with him again after 31 years. RIP old friend. From all the remaining Dovells. Jerry, Arnie, Mike, and Mark,” he continued.

Born Leonard Orisoff, Barry co-founded The Dovells with Gross, Arnie Silver, Jim Mealey, and Mike Freda, and was known for singing on The Dovells’ signature tune, 1961’s “The Bristol Stomp”, and “You Can’t Sit Down” in 1963.

He then embarked on a solo career, scoring another hit in 1965 with “1-2-3”, earning himself a Grammy Award nomination, and in 1994, reunited with The Dovells for a pair of comeback shows.