Pop star and counterculture figure David Bowie passed away late Sunday (January 10) at the age of 69. Publicist Steve Martin confirmed the music icon’s death after an 18-month battle with cancer.
“David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family,” read a post on his Facebook page. The UK native had just turned 69 two days prior. His son from an earlier marriage, Duncan Jones, also relayed the news via social media writing, “Very sorry and sad to say it’s true. I’ll be offline for a while. Love to all.”
David Bowie recently completed his most recent album, Blackstar, which was released on his birthday. The Roots, Cyndi Lauper and the Mountain Goats were slated to honor Bowie during a March 31 tribute concert at Carnegie Hall.
He was seen as an innovator in music. His song “Changes” off his 1971 album Hunky Dory was perhaps his magnum opus and embodied the messaging of who he was as a person and musician. He was also regarded as an actor and best known for his role as Jareth the Goblin King in the 1986 film Labyrinth.
Above all, Mr. Bowie was an inspiration to those who knew him and musicians across all genres of music. Many in the world of hip hop and R&B paid their respects to the self-named Ziggy Stardust as he was indeed “the man who sold the world.”
Married for more than 20 years to international model Iman, Bowie and his wife have a daughter, Alexandria Jones. Iman’s exotic nature was only typical of Bowie’s zeal for boundary-pushing fashion as he was regarded as an icon the creative medium and perhaps why Kanye has such an admiration for him.
Born David Robert Jones, David Bowie was born in Brixton on January 8, 1947. He took up saxophone at a young age and was leading blues bands by the time he was a teenager. He would reinvent himself numerous times during the following decades, allowing him to grace jazz, funk, rock, pop and during his later years, electronica.
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(Photo: AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler, FIle)