The rising producer released his first track as i_o in December of 2017, and rose swiftly with an experimental acid techno sound that earned him releases on marquee labels, including Mau5trap and Armada Music. He counted deadmau5 as a major inspiration and received support from his idol via his myriad mau5trap releases, and sets at mau5trap events.
Lockhart, who had previously released music under the name Fawkes, was also supported by industry heavyweights including Armin van Buuren and Eric Prydz, who played his music and selected him to open shows. The most recent i_o release -- an update of Ian Van Dahl's trance classic "Castles in the Sky" -- came out via Armada just last Friday, November 20.
"Going to miss you my dude, it was a real pleasure working with you and watching you succeed," deadmau5 tweeted upon Lockhart's passing. "may you find rest, and let your music live on into eternity."
“It’s difficult to know where to begin," mau5trap says in a statement to Billboard. "Garrett first came to mau5trap in 2017 with a vision for the i_o project -- it was one of those moments where we knew right away it was special from the start. It has been an absolute pleasure and honor working alongside i_o and his incredible team for the past few years, building this passion project from the ground up. The love and support we have received from family, friends, and fans from all over the world has been immensely overwhelming."
"We will never forget so many iconic moments with our beloved friend Garrett; there’s too many to count," the statement continues. "i_o was family and an integral part of mau5trap history through multiple record releases, events, and tours. His approach to genres and music started a movement and was unprecedented. Garrett was a kind and loving friend with an incredible vision for his project and a true artist of his generation. He will never be forgotten and will always be with us on the dance floor.”
Named a Billboard Dance artist to watch in December of 2018, the Washington DC born, Los Angeles-based producer collaborated with a range of artists -- including Grimes, who selected Lockhart to work on the track "Violence" from her 2020 LP, Miss Anthropocene. In 2019 and 2020, he released his three part 444 EP series.
A fixture of the Los Angeles electronic community, Lockhart was scheduled to play 2021 festivals including Electric Zoo and Electric Daisy Carnival Las Vegas. He is being mourned online by artists including Rezz, Laidback Luke, Camelphat, Wuki and many more.
"I will always remember you as a passionate, and amazingly talented person," wrote Armada music co-founder Maykel Piron. "We are beyond sad to be saying goodbye forever, but we won’t let that take away from the amazing time we had working together. Our hearts go out to your family and loved ones. We will miss you."
"Today I lost my f--king brother. My best friend," Lockhart's friend and collaborator Jauz tweeted yesterday. "The person who I trusted more than anyone when it came to music. Today the world lost an incredible human being and one of the most visionary, genius producers of our generation."