The Space Oddity star passed away on Sunday (10Jan16) after a secret 18-month battle with cancer, and Eno, who worked with Bowie on his Berlin Trilogy albums, has taken to to share his shock with fans.

He writes: "Words cannot express: RIP David Bowie".

The former Roxy Music star has now opened up further about the huge loss, and reflected on the poignant last words he shared with Bowie during an email exchange last week (ends08Jan16).

"David's death came as a complete surprise, as did nearly everything else about him," Eno writes in a full statement to the BBC. "I feel a huge gap now. We knew each other for over 40 years, in a friendship that was always tinged by echoes of (Peter Cook and Dudley Moore's comedy characters) Pete and Dud."

"Over the last few years - with him living in New York and me in London - our connection was by email," he continued. "We signed off with invented names: some of his were mr showbiz, milton keynes, rhoda borrocks and the duke of ear.

"I received an email from him seven days ago. It was as funny as always, and as surreal, looping through word games and allusions and all the usual stuff we did. It ended with this sentence: 'Thank you for our good times, brian. they will never rot'. And it was signed 'Dawn'. I realise now he was saying goodbye."

Tributes have poured in from stars far and wide, including the Rolling Stones, Paul MCCartney, Kanye West, Madonna, Yoko Ono, Pharrell Williams, Cher, and Courtney Love, and now Ozzy Osbourne, who attended Motorhead frontman Lemmy Kilmister's funeral on Saturday (09Jan16), has added a few words of his own.

"I just can't believe it," he writes on Facebook. "I am in total shock about David Bowie's passing. It's crazy. Never in a million years did I think that we would lose such an amazing guy so young. I guess I thought he would live forever. I'm at a loss for words right now. Wow."

Meanwhile, another former Beatle, Ringo Starr, writes on Twitter, "God bless David Bowie peace and love to all his family", and Bette Midler adds, "Bowie WAS The Man Who Fell to Earth.Curious, brilliant, enigmatic and sweet.We needed him and he appeared, changing our perceptions forever."

Motley Crue's Vince Neil, dance star Moby, veteran entertainer Donny Osmond, Jared Leto, and Alanis Morissette are among the latest celebrities to share their condolences online.