Avicii...Goodbye brother
Avicii...Goodbye brother

By Dan Prince MUSIC Read in PDF format N17/2018
Avicii...Goodbye brother A musical innovator, the kid next door, a genius of our time, the boy who just wanted to have fun. Avicii, we salute you…

April 20th 2018 will always be remembered as the day the electronic music world stood still. Of course the deaths of legends such as Hendrix, Cobain and Winehouse were tragic, but Avicii’s passing is different. He was one of us. A kid with the dancefloor running through his veins who made music. Sweet, emotional, euphoric music that made grown men weep and fellow producers gasp in admiration. He was the artist who changed the global electronic game forever thanks to a single riff and an Etta James sample that rose majestically up towards the sun.

In the weeks after his death millions of people have paid their tributes. From royal circles, Hollywood, music legends, superstar DJs and of course the most important people, his fans. And whilst the desperately sad circumstances of his final moments on earth have been devastating to discover, it has been the truth of Tim’s tortured soul that has been the hardest pill to swallow. A genius with an uncanny sense of melody plucked from obscurity and thrust into a world of insane schedules, private planes and lonely hotel rooms where the mini bar was always full.

The music industry has already started to take steps to make sure tragedies like this does not happen again. An artist’s schedule is a crippling one with no respite and the signs were there too often with Tim, he couldn’t have done more to cry for help. So let us leave the machine to rebuild itself and prove it does care about these musical geniuses who entertain us every night of the week around the globe. Instead let us celebrate the glorious talents of Tim Bergling, the shy, brilliant young man from Stockholm who was adored and worshiped in every country of the world thanks to a musical talent that could melt the heart. A child brought up listening to his father’s collection of 60s soul and his brothers’ American rock who thankfully saw the light and fell in love with dance music. And practically overnight became the darling of EDM.

In Ibiza we were the luckiest of all. For five glorious summers Avicii wowed us with his residency at Ushuaïa Beach Club. It’s where he roadtested his big summer tunes, it’s where he let his hair down with his DJ mates…it’s where he played his last ever show. Stepping onto his plane on his way to Ibiza for that final time he happily posted on Instagram “Ushuaïa I am so excited about tonight, this will go down in history!” We didn’t believe it at the time of course, we always thought that one day he would return to the island that had adopted him as one of their own. The messiah of the decks with his golden tumble of hair and green eyes, an artist who would pose happily for photos whilst wandering through town, an DJ who’s name the tattoo artists could never spell wrong.

Amazingly he never won a Grammy for any of his nearly 20 global top 10 singles. He was a musician always with one foot in a new direction, all too aware of where he had come from but never afraid to step somewhere unknown. Who can forget that moment at Miami’s Ultra festival in 2013 when he debuted ‘Wake Me Up’, a strummy anthem blending Country bluegrass and house music. The crowd booed as the banjo and violinist played but still went home humming the song. He was right again, of course. In December too he played his cards just right. With his latest EP still days from completion and his studio team desperate to wrap things up, Tim disappeared off the face of the earth, his mobile switched off, his swanky LA pad deserted. Only to reappear in Peru via another Instagram video, this time pictured with a llama and his new song ‘Friend of Mine’ playing in the background. His fanbase exploded, he broke the internet and became the number one trending topic everywhere. Of course he was right again. He understood.

Sifting through the lyrics of Tim’s songs is a heartbreaking process with far too many double entendres screaming out from the page. And what happens to his unreleased 300 tracks is now for his family to decide. For now we pray and hope that Tim is in a happier place looking down at us this summer as we dance happily in the sun. Singing his lyrics, chanting his name, remembering a god…

Did You know…?

Avicii donated millions to charities aiding global hunger as well as campaigning against human trafficking and gang violence.

He performed at the wedding of Sweden’s Prince Carl Philip after meeting him in Ibiza.

He made history in 2012 by becoming the first DJ to headline the world famous Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

In 2014 he was awarded the Music Export Prize by the Swedish government for his contribution to the country’s music scene

He performed at 813 gigs between 2008 and 2016.

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