By Brian Ives,

One of pop and rock music’s most consistently trailblazing artists, David Bowie, died overnight. A note on his Facebook page read, “January 10 2016 – David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18 month battle with cancer. While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief.”

David Bowie (Getty Images)

David Bowie (Getty Images)

His death came just two days after his 69th birthday, and the release of his latest album, ★ (pronounced “Blackstar”), was released.

Related: Celebrities React To Death Of Legendary Rock Singer David Bowie

Bowie kept his health issues private, although rumors of his ailing heath have circulated over the past few years, fueled the fact that he hasn’t appeared in public in nearly a decade. His last performance and public appearance was in November of 2006 when he sang a duet with Alicia Keys at an event for the Keep a Child Alive organization.

PHOTOS & VIDEOS: David Bowie Through The Years

When he announced his last album, 2013’s The Next Day, it came as a shock to fans, who had presumed he had retired from recording and public life. He made no appearances to promote The Next Day, although he filmed a number of music videos for the album; he’d also done two videos for ★.

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