Some artists are compelled to create in the face of death.
Death comes to us all, but everyone copes with it in their own way. Some might spend their final days quietly in the company of friends and family, but others use their remaining time on this Earth to create something worth leaving behind. Even the greatest titans of popular music must go some day, but thankfully many of them have left behind moving farewell albums in one final burst of inspiration. Here are 8 of the most powerful.
'Blackstar' by David Bowie
David Bowie’s 25th and final studio album Blackstar is a unique listening experience, fusing experimental rock and acid jazz into a dark, timeless and otherworldly sound. It seemed like just another musical reinvention from an artist known for them upon its release on January 8, 2016, but that changed after Bowie’s unexpected death just two days earlier. Producer Tony Visconti revealed the album was intended as a swan song, as Bowie had been quietly struggling with liver cancer for some time. The intention of the album seems obvious in retrospect, with lyrics like “Look up here, I’m in heaven” finding the ever-enigmatic Bowie grappling with encroaching mortality.