Country music singer Luke Bell has died after he was reported missing over a week ago. He was 32.
Bell was found dead in Tucson, Arizona, on Monday, near where he was reported missing on Aug. 20, the Tucson Police Department told the New York Post. Authorities have not yet confirmed his cause of death.
Bell’s friend Matt Kinman, also a country singer, confirmed the news to music website Saving Country Music.
Born in Kentucky, and raised in Wyoming, Bell got his start playing in a band in a local bar, according to the site’s obituary.
“He was one of the most authentic and magnetizing artists to grace the country music art form in the modern era,” it read.
“And those who knew Luke Bell, they know this assessment is in no way hyperbole or flattery. Even though he released only one album, in that single volume, Luke Bell captured a bygone era, aura and mood in country music that escapes even the most adept and gifted of country music artists today.”
“As troubled as he was talented, Luke Bell nonetheless left his mark. And through the gift of his music, Luke Bell leaves the Earth and more pleasant place than he found it,” the obituary continues.
Many of his country music contemporaries shared tributes after the news broke.
“Man…Luke Bell…what the fuck. RIP to a real one. Been a long time since I saw him, and I was just talking about him the other day wondering what he’s been up to. Truly a sad night for country music,” wrote Joshua Hedley.
Mike and the Moonpies, a band, posted an emotional tribute on Facebook.
“I can vividly remember the first time I met Luke at Hole in the Wall over a decade ago, down to the clothes on his back. The man (and his music) left an impression,” the post read. “He was a real deal traveling troubadour out there on that lost highway. Do yourself a favor and put on some Luke Bell tunes tonight in his memory. Rest In Peace, friend.”