Madonna has paid an emotional tribute to Nick Kamen, who has died at the age of 59
The Essex-born model and singer, who appeared in a famous 1980s Levi’s launderette advert and was also considered a protege of Madonna, died after a battle with bone marrow cancer.
The singer paid tribute to him in a tweet, writing: “It breaks my heart to know you are gone.
“You were always such a kind sweet human and you suffered too much.
“Hope you are happier wherever you are Nick Kamen.”
Kamen first came to public attention when he appeared on the front of The Face magazine in 1984 wearing a ski hat, lipstick and aviator sunglasses.
The next year he starred in an advertisement for Levi's in which he stripped down to wash his blue jeans in a public launderette and waited in his boxer shorts.
He launched a career in pop music in 1986 with the number five hit Each Time You Break My Heart from his eponymous debut album.
After contacting him, Madonna signed on to produce and sing backing vocals on the track.
Kamen's second single, Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever, a cover of the Four Tops' 1966 hit, was less successful but reached number 16.
His sister Denise Kent, from Witney, Oxfordshire told the MailOnline: “He was a real fighter. He gave it everything and was in and out of hospital.
“He never gave up and put up such a good fight It has been four years. A long time,” she added.
Ms Kent said she last saw her brother on Sunday and that family members would often take it in turn to visit him at his London home and give his partner Lucinda some respite from caring for him.
Singer Boy George wrote on Instagram: "R.I.P to the most beautiful and sweetest man Nick Kamen!"
Comedian Matt Lucas wrote on Twitter: “If you didn’t have a crush on Nick Kamen in the 80s, you probably weren’t there. RIP.”
A message posted on Duran Duran’s Twitter account read: “So so sad to hear of the passing of Nick Kamen. One of the loveliest and gentlest men I ever met. He was a beloved friend to my daughter and her Mom. We shall all miss him. RIP Nick”- JT”
Actress Susie Cave shared a photo of Kamen on her Instagram Stories and wrote: "RIP Nick Kamen my sweet friend."
Welsh journalist and author, Paul Burston, tweeted: “RIP my favourite Buffalo Boy, Nick Kamen.”