Stars from the world of music and TV have paid tribute to the “terrific” Darius Campbell Danesh following his death at the age of 41.
The former Pop Idol contestant was found dead in his apartment in Minnesota on 11 August, his family announced on Tuesday.
While his cause of death is not yet known, medical examinations are continuing to take place and the local police department has said there are “no signs of intent or suspicious circumstances”.
The Scottish singer-songwriter and theatre star shot to fame after appearing in the ITV show Popstars, where he became known for his audition performance of Britney’s Baby One More Time.
Leading tributes was former Pop Idol judge Pete Waterman, who told Sky News that Campbell Danesh was a “such a lovely lad” and his “heart goes out” to his family.
“I still can’t quite believe it. He was 41 years old… it’s such a young age,” he said. “It was one of the phone calls you just never expect.”
Mr Waterman added: “He was lovely to work with, genuine and hugely talented. I first met him on the first Pop Idol, I hadn’t seen him on Popstars, but I had two young daughters who told me about this crazy guy singing Baby One More Time.
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“He walked out, and he sang, and I thought he was brilliant. I thought, ‘wow, this guy is great’, and we became firm friends.”
He went on to say Campbell Danesh was “hugely polite” but a “complex character” who was hard to “pin down”.
“He did shows, he produced films, he did all sorts of investments, and we talked about him getting back into the pop industry and I just knew it would never happen,” he said.
“He could have been Michael Buble, but he wanted to do too many things.”
‘A true family man’
Presenter and former member of Hear’Say Myleene Klass paid tribute to the “talented” Campbell Danesh.
Sharing a link to a video of the singer performing, the 44-year-old, who also found fame on Popstars, wrote: “Everyone should watch this performance. Darius, you were so talented, so kind.
“A true family man. My thoughts are with them now.”
She also shared an image of a group of people, including herself and Darius, with the caption: “Back at the very start.”
‘My childhood crush’
Gogglebox star Scarlett Moffatt posted a picture of the singer performing at a competition on her Instagram story.
“Darius, you were my childhood crush from Pop Idol days and I still blast out Colourblind on a rainy day… prayers to your family, friends and fans,” she wrote.
Campbell Danesh’s debut single, Colourblind, was released in July 2002 after he appeared on the show and shot to number one.
‘Always our Britney’
Liberty X member Jessica Taylor, whose group was formed on Popstars, tweeted: “I’m so sad. Darius was only 41.
“He was an absolute gentleman and I know all of us who did Popstars with him will remember him with huge fondness.
“He had a way of bringing us all together and had such a natural warmth about him. Rest in peace lovely man.”
Fellow bandmate Michelle Heaton said: “So sad… thoughts with Darius family right now x always our Britney.”
Sharing a photo of her and Campbell Danesh, Allo Allo actress Vicki Michelle described him as a “lovely talented man and a gentleman”.
English-born actor Matthew Marsden described the news as “truly heartbreaking” and remembered the first time he met Campbell Danesh.
“I first met Darius when he auditioned for the Big Breakfast weather man years ago. He was a terrific human being. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family,” he said.
Radio 1 DJ Adele Roberts simply said: “This is so sad. Thinking of Darius’ family and friends.”