DJ/producer Roberto Concina, better known to the world by his stage name Robert Miles, died today in Ibiza at the age of 47.
The news was broken by producer and longtime friend Joe T Vannelli, who first released Miles’ biggest hit, the trance/chillout classic “Children” in Italy in January 1995 as part of the EP Soundtracks on his DBX label, on Instagram.
Vanelli wrote, “The tragic news of the death of a very talented artist of our time makes me incredulous and upset. I will miss the fights, brawls, criticism, judgements but especially your talent in finding sounds and unparalleled melodies.”
Miles released six full-length albums during his career, but “Children” — a song he composed after seeing photographs of children who had been victims of the war in the former Yugoslavia — was Miles’ most successful single. It was certified gold and platinum in several countries and it reached number one in more than 12 countries.
Miles reflected on the genesis of the track in his bio: “I was anxious to see how people would take to this piece. The following Sunday morning I opened my DJ set with ‘Children’, feeling both scared and excited… the DJ just before me had ended with a very heavy piece. To break the existing mood with a melodic tune and a long intro could have simply cleared the floor. The people in front of me stopped in their tracks, their eyes fixed to the console almost in annoyance. I felt my blood run cold and I remember lowering my eyes in fear. The record reached its soaring climax. From the floor came a thunderous noise… I lifted my gaze and saw a sea of hands reaching up high and a smile stamped on every face. A girl approached me in tears. “What music is this?” she asked me. I don’t think I shall ever forget that moment, when I realized that my feelings had been conveyed through my music. My dream turned into reality.”
He went on to launch his own label in 2000, S:alt Records, and kept busy as a DJ and producer.
The cause of death has yet to be announced. More as this story develops.