GRAND CONCOURSE, the Bronx — Joey Boots, a favorite on “The Howard Stern Show,” was found dead in his Bronx apartment Friday night, police said.
Boots, real name Joseph Bassolino, was found unconscious and unresponsive inside his Grand Concourse apartment when police arrived around 9:45 p.m. Friday. EMS workers pronounced him dead upon arrival. His cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner.
“High Pitch” Erik Bleaman, another member of Stern’s radio crew, reportedly visited Boots’ apartment after Boots didn’t show up for a gig he had Friday night. Erik apparently got the building manager to do a welfare check on Boots, who did not answer his door, according to the Daily News.
That’s when they found Boots, 49, unconscious, and called police.
Boots was known as one of Stern’s Wack Packers, “an odd collection of misfits and unique characters,” according to one Howard Stern biography. He popularized the phrase “Baba Booey” by shouting it on “The Howard Stern Show” and also behind reporters during live news broadcasts across New York City.
Boots even went to court and defended his right to yell the phrase during live broadcasts. He won the court case.
In addition to being a Stern regular, Boots had a live podcast called “The Joey Boots Show” on Friday nights.
On Saturday afternoon, Stern tweeted: “Tribute to the one and only Joey B in the new year. He will be missed. #BabaooeyHowardSternpenis”