Country music veteran Joe Diffie has died after testing positive for COVID-19. He was 61. On Friday, Diffie announced he had contracted the coronavirus, becoming the first country star to go public with such a diagnosis. Diffie's publicist Scott Adkins said the singer died Sunday due to complications from the virus.
Back in the 90s, Diffie was a tour de force on the country music charts. He scored a total of 17 Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Diffie, who recently celebrated his 25th anniversary as a member of the Grand Ole Opry, is best known for such No. 1s as "Home," "If The Devil Danced (In Empty Pockets)," "Third Rock From The Sun," "Pickup Man" and "Bigger Than The Beatles."
On Billboard's Top Country Albums, Diffie charted 12 titles from 1990 through 2013, including two top 10s: 1993's Honky Tonk Attitude and 1994's Third Rock From the Sun. The sets reached Nos. 10 and 6, respectively.
On Friday at Instagram, Diffie posted his last entry in which he said he was being treated for the virus. "My family and I are asking for privacy at this time. We want to remind the public and all my fans to be vigilant, cautious and careful during this pandemic."
Diffie is survived by his wife, Theresa Crump, and five children from his four marriages.