There’s been a helluva lot written and said about David Bowie this week.
I just want to add my 2 cents worth.
Like most of us I was shocked when I heard the news. Luisa saw it on Facebook and came out of the bedroom with the words “RIP David Bowie”
“How do you mean ?” I said.
She told me that David Bowie was dead. In the very first instance I thought there must have been some sort of mistake. Of course there wasn’t it.
Bowie kept his illness private and that was one of the reasons that his passing shocked us, but I think the other reason was that this man was forever young. He never ever looked his age. David Bowie always just looked like a skinny little London boy. He often appeared to be around 20 years than he really was.
Some rock critics have described him as potentially the most influential artist in the rock era. He’s not. But he sure made a massive splash in the pool.
I didn’t get the shocking red hair, Ziggy Stardust Bowie. It seemed to be music that wasn’t made for me.
Rebel, Rebel, Changes and Young Americans….now you’re talking.
I loved the dirty guitars of Rebel Rebel and I wondered why he or she wasn’t sure whether she was a boy or a girl. I also wondered why her face was a mess and how she’d torn her dress. Space Oddity was never a song that truly connected with me at the time but it’s grown on me enormously over the decades.
Fashion and Ashes to Ashes hit the mark for me. To me as a 14 year old these songs were the cutting edge of music. Mainstream enough for me to connect with, but out there enough to be rebel.
I started on the radio in 83 with the China Girl album in high rotation. Pretty much at the time that I commenced on the radio, Modern Love was my favourite song and I got such a blast out of spinning that disc.
I’m no music critic, but for me the beauty of Bowie as an artist was that he didn’t seem to really care much what we thought of his music. It appeared that music was a creative outlet for him….that he did it much more for him than he did it for us. And I think that’s the mark of a great artist.
As we all get older…and I’m very close to finally crossing over into my 6th decade on the planet…..as we all get older, I think every time a prominent person passes, it makes you ask questions about your own mortality. Bowie’s passing has definitely done that for me.
What’s my favourite Bowie song ?
I can’t really explain why, but it’s Young Americans
Bowie himself described Young Americans as ‘plastic soul’. Here was a skinny white London boy, not pretending to be black, but paying tribute to R and B in perfect fashion. I’ve always loved it.