Dionne Warwick paid tribute to her longtime collaborator Burt Bacharach, who died Wednesday at the age of 94.
“Burt’s transition is like losing a family member,” Warwick, 82, said in a statement. “These words I’ve been asked to write are being written with sadness over the loss of my Dear Friend and my Musical Partner.”
The Oscar-winning songwriter and composer died at his home in Los Angeles of natural causes.
“On the lighter side we laughed a lot and had our run ins, but always found a way to let each other know our family, like roots, were the most important part of the relationship,” the statement continued. “My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, letting them know he is now peacefully resting and I too will miss him.”
Bacharach was a legendary composer who worked closely with Warwick on tunes including “I Say a Little Prayer,” “Alfie,” “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again,” “Don’t Make Me Over,” “Anyone Who Had a Heart,” “Do You Know the Way to San Jose” and “Walk on By.”
He discovered Warwick in 1961 when she was a backup singer for a Drifters recording session of “Mexican Divorce.”
Bacharach — along with his longtime collaborator and lyricist Hal David, who died in 2012 — helped turn Warwick into the household name that she is. She had 39 of her hit songs penned by the duo.
However, the two had a falling out in the 1970s when Bacharach and David stopped working together. Warwick sued both of them for breach of contract, and the case was settled by the end of the decade.
Warwick and Bacharach eventually reunited for her 1984 album “Finder of Lost Loves” and for the hit “That’s What Friends Are For” — which won the Grammy for Song of the Year. It was the only time Bacharach won the award in the category, though he’d been nominated four times.
The two of them continued their professional relationship for decades after.