Yesterday, the world mourned the loss of Stephen Hillenburg. The creator of SpongeBob SquarePants passed away at 57 after a year-long battle with ALS. One musician especially affected by his death is Beck, who penned a heartfelt tribute to the famed animator and past collaborator.
“Very sad to hear the news of the passing of Stephen Hillenberg [sic], who years and years ago used to be my neighbor and kindly did the artwork for the first music that I ever released,” the Colors songwriter wrote on Facebook. Beck attached images of the aforementioned art, which date back to the early ’90s. He also revealed that one of the photos used was actually shot behind Hillenburg’s own apartment.
“I always remembered him as a genuinely sweet guy,” continued Beck. “I was lucky to get to run into him by chance at the airport a few months ago. Sending my condolences to his family and to all the friends who are missing him today and thinking about old times.”
Check out Hillenburg’s artwork for Beck below, followed by Beck’s full tribute.