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DJ Carl Cox: Avicii 'just wanted to be free to make music'

Avicii Image copyright Getty Images

Avicii's music was a "shout for help", according to fellow DJ Carl Cox.

The Swedish star behind hits including Wake Me Up was found dead in April, aged 28.

"He just wanted to be free to make music," Carl told BBC Radio 1's Danny Howard.

"The pressure was put on him and he was in trouble mentally. It was very sad to see someone who had so much to offer take his life."

Image caption Carl Cox and Radio 1's Danny Howard

Avicii, real name Tim Bergling, was found dead at a hotel in Oman earlier this year.

Tributes to the DJ poured in from artists and fans across the world.

His family suggested in a statement that he had taken his own life as he "could not go on any longer".

Carl says he met Avicii many times as the pair played high profile dance events across the world.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Carl is one of the most famous house and techno DJs in the world

"I was very, very sad because I could see he was not in control of himself.

"We used to hang out backstage but he was a guy on his own, he didn't have much of an entourage.

"It was just business, business, business all the time."

The British DJ, who has held a residency at Space in Ibiza and served as a DJ on Radio 1's Essential Mix, said he felt that Avicii was overworked.

Image copyright Getty Images

"It was too much, even for a young guy. The pressure was put on him.

Avicii had suggested he disliked the attention being famous had brought him, and in 2016 quit touring.

"I know I am blessed to be able to travel all around the world and perform," he said at the time, "but I have too little left for the life of a real person behind the artist."

Carl says Avicii's sadness was clear to hear in the lyrics to his 2013 song Wake Me Up, which reached number one across the world.

The chorus begins: "So wake me up when it's all over/ When I'm wiser and I'm older."

"Now when you hear that record it's sad because in some ways it was a shout for help," says Carl.

"He just wanted to be free to make music."

You can hear the full interview with Carl Cox on Danny Howard's Radio 1 show from 11pm, and listen back here.

For help and support on mental health visit the BBC Advice pages.

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