Busbee, Notable Songwriter and Producer, Dead at 43

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Busbee
Rachel Luna/WireImage

The music world is reeling from the loss of celebrated songwriter Busbee.

The producer and renowned writer -- born Michael James Ryan -- has died, Warner Records confirmed. The California-born music luminary was 43. The cause of his death has not yet been disclosed. 

Warner Records co-Chairmen Aaron Bay-Schuck and Tom Corson released a statement to their staff on Sunday, breaking the news. "Today we lost Busbee, a dear friend, business partner with his company Altadena, and one of the best and brightest creative minds in music. Busbee’s kindness and legacy will never be forgotten and our hearts and prayers go out to his family at this very difficult time."

Throughout his career, Busbee worked with countless A-list artists and musical luminaries, including Christina Aguilera, Pink, Gwen Stefani, Lauren Alaina, Gavin DeGraw, Lady Antebellum, Adam Lambert, Rascal Flatts and Shakira, to name just a few.

Following news of his death, a number of his friends and colleagues took to social media to mourn his passing and share memories of their time together.

Country singer Maren Morris took to Instagram on Sunday to share a snapshot of herself and Busbee backstage at a show.

"This just doesn’t seem fair. I will always love you and the songs and albums I was lucky to make with you, Busbee. Rest well, my sweet friend," she captioned the photo, along with a broken heart emoji.

Busbee wrote four songs for Morris -- including "My Church" and "80s Mercedes" -- as well as co-produced her 2016 debut studio album, Hero.

Singer Carly Pearce also shared a heartbreaking slideshow of snapshots showing herself and Busbee through the years. Pearce wrote in the caption, "I sang “every little thing” tonight through broken tears with thousands of voices and cell phone lights in the air, because I asked them to raise them up high so you could see them shining from heaven. What a beautiful sight it was."

"Every Little Thing" was Pearce's debut single, which busbee penned, along with seven other songs off her 2017 album of the same name.

"You gave my music a place in this world. I’ll cherish the 2 albums, songs, talks, laughs & memories we shared over the years," Pearce shared in the post. "My heart is broken, but the legacy of your talents and your heart will live on in all of the artists and people you touched. I love you, Busbee."

See some more touching tributes and heartfelt memorials below.

View this post on Instagram

My Story of busbee: I first met busbee in October of 2008. We had a writing appointment with an “LA writer” and as a brand new band we didn’t know what to expect. He was such a talented piano player and immediately started on a piano riff to a song we ended up writing, and later recording on our 2nd album called “Our Kind of Love.” We stayed in touch over the years and ended up writing a ton together. We wrote so much together and ended up recording a lot of these songs on many different albums. From my memory they are: ———————————— Our Kind of Love Ready To Love Again Army Home You Look Good (Busbee, Hurd, Lindsey) Falling for You The Stars Good Time to be Alive When You Were Mine Somebody Else’s Heart Alright (upcoming album) ———————————— Busbee was a man that was filled with the spirit. Busbee had an energy and a soul that was anointed from God. His gift was incredible and his faith in God was inspiring. We continued to write together, and then in 2016, we discussed him producing an album on us. We flew out to LA for a month, rented a house, and made the Heart Break album with him. We’d travel over to Toluca Lake every day and spend all day writing/recording, singing, eating sushi, drinking coffee, and sharing life together. Oh the memories we made. —————————— This year we held a residency in Las Vegas and busbee was our second songwriter to attend in February 2019. We were so honored to have him and his lovely wife Jess out to visit and be a part of the show. Busbee got up each night and did some of his other big hits like My Church and H.O.L.Y. It was such a joy to have him. He owned that room. —————————— He will be so missed. We had the chance to hug his neck a couple weeks ago, praying for a miracle of healing. I’m so devastated by the tragic loss of our dear friend, we will share your story wherever we go......love you. #busbee

A post shared by Dave Haywood (@davehaywoodla) on

 

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