Songwriter busbee Dies At 43
Songwriter and producer busbee died over the weekend. He was 43.
According to reports, busbee was diagnosed with glioblastoma – the same brain cancer that felled The Tragically Hip's Gord Downie in 2017.
The Grammy nominee, whose real name was Michael James Ryan, helped craft hits for pop acts like Backstreet Boys, Kelly Clarkson and Gwen Stefani as well as country artists like Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum and Rascal Flatts.
In 2016, busbee told Rolling Stone how he feels about his success. “I have an amazing wife and two beautiful girls, and I get to write songs for a living? I’m like, whose life did I hijack?" (He and his wife recently welcomed a third child.)
“This just doesn’t seem fair,” Maren Morris tweeted. “I will always love you and the songs and albums I was lucky to make with you, Busbee. Rest well, my sweet friend.”
Blake Shelton tweeted: "I absolutely can’t accept the loss of mine and Gwen’s friend Michael (Busbee)..Too much to say for social media. Too much pain and unfairness period. I guess sometimes you gotta dig extra EXTRA deep for peace to continue to have faith. And I will because Michael ALWAYS had faith."
Adam Lambert said he was shocked and saddened by news of the loss. "I am so grateful I was able to have collaborated with him. He was brilliant and warm, with palpable joy for his craft." James Bay remembered him as a "beautiful and brilliant man."
Carly Pearce shared: "You gave my music a place in this world. I’ll cherish the 2 albums, songs, talks, laughs & memories we shared over the years. 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."
Andy Grammer, on Instagram, described busbee as "a rare friend." He wrote: "We never released a song together but we hung and wrote a bunch and I loved him dearly. This fact makes it even sweeter that he would consistently just check in on me. As a friend. Just looked through texts of him saying 'just checking in on you, how’s the journey going? Anything I can help with on this end?' Small acts of kindness was his way.
"You can wikipedia the smashes he wrote but to those who knew him he will go down as one of the biggest hearts to ever do it. I love you busbee... we love you. You will be missed my friend. I’m sure they need songs in heaven so... get to work."
This article has been updated since it was first published.