NEW YORK (AP) — Even frequent David Bowie collaborators Nile Rodgers and Brian Eno had no idea he was sick. Rodgers says he suspected something was up with Bowie a few years ago when Bowie presented Rodgers with an award but had to give it by film. Rodgers says Bowie was charming and big-hearted but Rodgers could see he was not well. Rodgers says he didn’t want to pry because everyone deals with their health in their own way. Eno tells Rolling Stone magazine Bowie sent him an email just a week ago that was full of inside jokes. He says it ended with Bowie saying, “Thank you for our good times, Brian. They will never rot.” Eno says he realizes now Bowie was saying goodbye.
LONDON (AP) — How big was David Bowie’s influence? He’s getting tributes from major world leaders. The White House is saluting Bowie’s contribution to the arts, and spokesman Josh Earnest says people across the world are talking about how Bowie inspired them. British Prime Minister David Cameron calls Bowie’s death “a huge loss” and says Bowie was a “master of reinvention.” Germany’s Foreign Ministry tweeted a video for Bowie’s song “Heroes” with a thank you for Bowie’s help in bringing down the Berlin Wall. Berlin Mayor Michael Mueller says “Heroes” was the hymn for a once-divided city longing for freedom. The Vatican’s culture minister, Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, tweeted the lyrics to “Space Oddity” and ended with, “May God’s love be with you.”
NEW YORK (AP) — What was planned as a tribute concert to David Bowie has now become a memorial concert. New York’s Carnegie Hall had planned to host a concert featuring Bowie’s music with acts like Cyndi Lauper, Perry Farrell, Ann Wilson of Heart and The Roots on March 31. The concert’s website says the timing of the tickets going on sale is “bizarre” and the show is taking on many more emotions now.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Natalie Cole was remembered as a loyal friend and a worthy successor to her famous father’s legacy. A music-filled funeral was held yesterday in Los Angeles. The daughter of Nat King Cole had carved out her own Grammy Award-winning legacy during a 40-year career. Among the several hundred mourners were singers Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, Lionel Richie, Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder. Natalie Cole died New Year’s Eve at age 65 of pulmonary arterial hypertension, which led to heart failure.
NEW YORK (AP) — David Bowie was a lot of things during a musical career that spanned five decades. But one thing he never was: boring. The singer has died. His rep says Bowie has lost his battle with cancer — and at the end, he died “peacefully” and surrounded by his family. He had been ill for 18 months. Bowie changed his musical style as often and drastically as he would change his look. He turned 69 on Friday — the same day he released a new album called “Blackstar.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — One of the big players in the Chicago blues scene has died. Otis Clay died suddenly of a heart attack on Friday at the age of 73, according to his daughter. Clay’s best-known song is “Trying To Live My Life Without You” from 1972, which Bob Seger later turned into a hit. Clay first released a string of gospel-tinged soul records in the 1960s. He never stopped recording and touring and he was nominated for two awards at the Blues Music Awards in May. Clay was also an active player in charity projects in Chicago.
NASHVILLE (AP) — The man who sang “This Time (We’re Really Breaking Up)” has died. A family friend says Troy Shondell died Thursday of complications related to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases at a nursing facility in Picayune, Mississippi. He was 76. Shondell hit number 6 with “This Time” in 1961 but never had another top 40 hit. However, his lasting influence may be his name. Tommy James named his band The Shondells after him, and The Ides of March were originally called The Shondels — with one “L” — but changed it after hearing about James’ band.
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — Adele’s “Live from London” special will air in the U.S. on Valentine’s Day. She’ll perform hits from “25” and her earlier albums on the show, which will air on BBC America.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Elton John will debut his new song in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle on “The Wonderful World of Disney: Disneyland 60.” He will sing “Wonderful Crazy Night” and “Circle of Life” during the ABC special on February 21.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Natalie Cole’s funeral is set for today in Los Angeles. A Cole family representative says Chaka Khan will sing at the service at West Angeles Church of God in Christ, where Cole was once a member. Cole will be buried next to her parents, sister and brother at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in nearby Glendale, California.