British singer David Bowie died Sunday at the age of 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer. The news was posted on the artist’s official social media accounts.
Bowie, who was born David Robert Jones in Brixton, south London, scored his first hit in 1969 with the song “Space Oddity.” Since then he secured an enduring fanbase with his early albums “The Man Who Sold the World” and “Hunky Dory.”The singer’s breakthrough didn’t happen until 1972, when he unveiled his alter ego, Ziggy Stardust, which catapulted him from “cult figure to rock icon.” Bowie made his last appearance as his alter ego at a London show on July 3 of that year. At one point during the 18-song set, he told the audience, “Of all the shows on the tour, this particular show will remain with us the longest, because not only is it the last show of the tour, it’s the last show we’ll ever do.”
In 1975, he achieved his first No. 1 hit in the U.S. with the song “Fame,” co-written by John Lennon.
Bowie also had a notable career on the silver screen, appearing in films such as “The Man Who Fell To Earth,” “Basquiat,” “The Prestige” and the cult-classic “Labyrinth,” in which he starred as Jareth the Goblin King.
Bowie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996 and given the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006
Bowie released his 25th album, “Blackstar,” on Jan. 8. Additionally, the musical “Lazarus,” which he co-wrote with playwright Enda Walsh and features old and new Bowie songs, opened in December to positive reviews. It earned bragging rights as the fastest-selling Off Broadway show ever, according to The New York Times.
Bowie is survived by his model wife, Iman, their daughter Alexandria Zahra Jones, and his filmmaker son Duncan Jones, from his first marriage to Mary Angela Bowie (née Barnett).