David Bowie, one of rock music's most talented musicians, and most iconic and lasting figures, died Sunday after an 18-month battle with cancer. He was 69.

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The rock legend released his final album, Blackstar, on Friday, his 69th birthday.

"David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer," the official statement read. "While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family's privacy during their time of grief."

Bowie's son, filmmaker Duncan Jones, confirmed his father's death on Twitter: "Very sorry and sad to say it's true. I'll be offline for a while. Love to all."

In a career that spanned 50 years. Bowie was a singer, songwriter, musician, producer, actor, and fashion icon. His hits included "A Space Oddity," "Changes," "Rebel Rebel," "Young Americans," "Fame," "Fashion," "Let's Dance," "Modern Love," "Under Pressure," and "Ziggy Stardust."

As an actor, he appeared as everything from an alien in the movie The Man Who Fell to Earth, a singing goblin king in the Jim Henson musical Muppet movie, Labyrinth, John Merrick, known as The Elephant Man in a three-month run on Broadway, Pontius Pilate in Martin Scorsese's The Last Temptation of Christ, to inventor Nikola Tesla in the Christopher Nolan thriller The Prestige.

He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996.

He was born David Jones on Jan. 8, 1947 in South London. He changed his name to David Bowie after the Monkees' Davy Jones became a teen idol in 1966.

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Bowie's death was the subject of internet hoaxes for years.