David Bowie’s producer Tony Visconti to give keynote speech at SXSW 2016

Visconti worked with Bowie from 1969 right through to final album 'Blackstar'

David Bowie‘s longterm producer Tony Visconti has been announced as the keynote speaker for this year’s South-By-Southwest music festival (SXSW).

Visconti worked with Bowie throughout the late singer’s career, from his second album in 1969 to final album ‘Blackstar’.

His keynote speech will take place on March 16, with SXSW festival running in Austin, Texas from March 15-20.

Last year’s keynote speaker at the US festival was rapper Snoop Dogg, with Lady Gaga and Dave Grohl giving talks the two years prior.

Following Bowie’s passing, Visconti described his final album ‘Blackstar’ as a “parting gift” to fans.

Visconti released a message saying: “He always did what he wanted to do. And he wanted to do it his way and he wanted to do it the best way. His death was no different from his life – a work of Art. He made ‘Blackstar’ for us, his parting gift. I knew for a year this was the way it would be. I wasn’t, however, prepared for it. He was an extraordinary man, full of love and life. He will always be with us. For now, it is appropriate to cry.”


After Bowie posthumously scored his first US number one album, Visconti took to Facebook to release an additional statement, saying: “I am so proud of my dear friend’s accomplishment. One is just a number, but in this case he made an example of how true artistry and real quality can reach number one in the album charts.”

Visconti then added: “I’m reaching out to the top artists of today. Don’t pander to the the illusion of commercialism — even the biggest hits of today’s sales pale by comparison of the sales of past decades. Do what you fucking want to do, not what you think you have to do.”