David Bowie’s death, understandably, sent the world reeling, especially because it came mere days after he celebrated his 69th birthday and released a fine new album, Blackstar. Producer Brian Eno, who worked with Bowie on the “Berlin trilogy” of Low, Heroes, and Lodger as well as albums like 1995’s Outside, released a statement reading:
David’s death came as a complete surprise, as did nearly everything else about him. I feel a huge gap now. We knew each other for over 40 years, in a friendship that was always tinged by echoes of Pete and Dud. Over the last few years - with him living in New York and me in London - our connection was by email. We signed off with invented names: some of his were mr showbiz, milton keynes, rhoda borrocks and the duke of ear. About a year ago we started talking about Outside - the last album we worked on together. We both liked that album a lot and felt that it had fallen through the cracks. We talked about revisiting it, taking it somewhere new. I was looking forward to that. I received an email from him seven days ago. It was as funny as always, and as surreal, looping through word games and allusions and all the usual stuff we did. It ended with this sentence: ‘Thank you for our good times, brian. they will never rot.’ And it was signed ‘Dawn.’ I realise now he was saying goodbye.
Bowie’s circle of friends, collaborators, and admirers also took to social media to express their sorrow and disbelief:
— Peter Gabriel (@itspetergabriel) January 11, 2016
David Bowie was one of my most important inspirations, so fearless, so creative, he gave us magic for a lifetime.
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) January 11, 2016