David Bowie

Part of me genuinely believed he was an alien who would live forever. Part of me still does.

59 Comments on “David Bowie”

  1. Became a Bowie fan in 1972-3; had friends who attended his 1972 concert in Cleveland. He was, without doubt, a genius, and by far my favorite rock star. We’ll probably never know his true impact on music and culture: just too widespread. I am kind of freaked out right now because – like everyone else I had no idea he’d been ill – yesterday evening the haunting “Blackstar” was running through my mind and I just had a feeling that his (metaphorical) “song” was almost over. Breaks my heart that it was true. (BTW, His son attended college here in Ohio at the U. of Wooster. I remember reading that Bowie wanted his son to experience a “midwestern US college education.”)

  2. I come at Bowie as more of a movie fan; he was really an under appreciated actor in things like The Man Who Fell To Earth or Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence or The Hunger. But I keep coming back to his bureaucratic, matter-of-fact Pontius Pilate in The Last Temptation of Christ. He’s probably the most rational person in the movie, frustrated by the situation and by having to deal with yet another annoying little Palestine rabble-rouser. Pilate is interested in this odd little man, but after this it’s on to the rest of his day.

  3. Brilliant Marketing: Blackstar dropped on Friday. Mr. Bowie passed on Sunday. Godspeed . . .

  4. I loved him for My whole goddamn life. Seriously, I don’t remember ever not knowing who he was. (I’m 52) i listen to his duet with Bing Crosby every Christmas. So sad right now

  5. Never occurred to me that he could die … he’s BOWIE, for heaven’s sake. I was crushed to hear the news.

    One of my favourites is this bare vocal track, with him and Freddie Mercury, from Under Pressure. Titans, both of them … and both gone far too soon. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMQb9LCNGxs

  6. Immortality 101:fake your death every 70 years or so to avoid rousing the suspicions of the mortals.

  7. I saw him in Elephant Man in the Blackstone theatre in Chicago in (I think) 1981. What a tremendous talent.

  8. I’ve always enjoyed Bowie’s music but was never an actual fan; I don’t own any of his stuff. But that’s more a reflection of the fact that I rarely buy music; my vice has always been books and music has been a distant second. Now I find myself seeking out his stuff.

  9. I’m struck that he was able to release such a remarkable record as his last work. On Sunday morning, reading an article in the Los Angeles Times about him and the record, I thought it wonderful that his best work still might be ahead of him. What are the chances of that, for someone with a body of work like Bowie’s? Paul Simon, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger / Keith Richards, Elton John — none of them seem likely at this point to release anything as compelling, deep, as innovative as Blackstar.

    The article in the Times said Blackstar was recorded quickly, “in three sessions that took place in January, February and March 2015.” That sentence reads more melancholy today.

  10. I never saw him live musically, but I saw him in The Elephant Man on Broadway. The man could do anything, and he was brilliant at everything he did. God speed, Ziggy.

  11. I probably first heard Bowie in late ’83, when we got cable and MTV, but I didn’t really notice him until Labyrinth. For whatever reason*, I didn’t really get into his music for a long, but when I did, I almost kicked myself for waiting so long.

    The world seems a poorer place today.

    I’ll risk moderation to leave this here:

    *Okay, I’m not a huge fan of his 80s work, which probably explains everything.

  12. BJ Jones … Indeed he will! I will miss Major Tom but I know his new party is truly galactic, as it should be. Keep it going till I get there DB! Don’t let Freddy hog it all up!

  13. I have been a fan of David Bowie since I was a child. I watched our video of Labyrinth till the tape wore out and mom had to buy a new one. His music has been a constant fixture in my life, as have the characters he played. I honestly always suspected he was some sort of Fae masquing as mortal to inspire people through his music and his work….the man always looked so ethereal and otherworldly, it was easy to believe he was something more than human. Like he really was the Goblin King he portrayed, come to visit us mortals for sport and to inspire. He was one of music’s greats and like old aggie said, I don’t think we’ll ever be able to really measure his impact because of how much he influenced everything.

    Go well, David Bowie. You brought so much magic and joy and passion into the world, and the world is poorer for your loss.

  14. One of my favorite internet film critics, Kyle Kallgren, did a review a few years ago of The Man Who Fell To Earth, done in a musical form – specifically through filks of David Bowie’s songs.


    I’ll be binging on Bowie this week, not only through his music, but by also watching Man Who Fell To Earth and Labyrinth.

  15. The Man Who Fell To Earth set the standard for Weird Alien Sex.
    And The Hunger was an incredible Vampire movie – a real adult film, not like the kiddie vampires.
    Bowie was unique.

  16. I owe David Bowie a personal debt for helping me grow up.

    When I was in college (mid-70s) I sneered at Bowie as being a poseur. Over time I came to understand that I had completely missed the point and the personae were a major part of his creativity. Yes, even on his albums he was an actor as much as a musician. So what? Is there a problem here? To this day, when I start to get too full of myself, my realization that I was completely full of shit about Bowie drags me back to reality.

    The music behind the performances was great. Bowie was an expressive singer (he had to be, to inhabit the characters!), had great songwriting chops, and had a major talent for finding hot guitarists. The music endures.

    Sie waren ein held, Ziggy.

  17. Think on this: Instead of letting the world know he was ill, he gave the world more music. .

  18. .
    by Jonathan Vos Post
    In the Corridors of Power
    my 15 minutes lasted an hour
    Mauled by a Bear on Mars
    Left for dead, under my bed,
    Earth is a distant blue flower.
    David Bowie and John Lennon
    together again, at last,
    while to Capo di Tutti Capo
    was arrested — El Chapo–
    the word: Sean Penn is mightier than the sword
    Rebel, Rebel, fell to Earth
    Thin White Duke, feels the dearth
    as Pontius Pilate in The Last Temptation of Christ
    Bored, bureaucratic, walking on ice
    10:58 a.m.
    Mon 11 Jan 2016

  19. Bowie was an alien. And he didn’t die–he just went home.
    (At least that’s what I keep telling myself so I don’t get weepy at work.)

  20. “Heroes” was our wedding dance.
    Since he’d just released his new album, this was the last news I expected to hear.

  21. I am putting out my grief with gasoline.

    And my prayers they break the sky in two
    Believing the strangest things
    That Bowie is loving the Alien on the same GCU as Iain Banks

  22. Part of me genuinely believed he was an alien who would live forever. Part of me still does.

    Exactly my feeling about it, Scalzi.

    RIP – or enjoy wherever you are now, David Bowie.

  23. Farewell, Jareth. I will miss the Goblin King. Also loved him with Queen / Freddie Mercury in Under Pressure. And Space Oddity… sigh. Not a huge fan, but more than willing to acknowledge that he was a huge influence in music and movies over the years.

  24. [Deleted because not now, dude, plus I never heard of this before and I don’t have time to check it — JS]

  25. [Deleted because this isn’t a discussion. You have the whole rest of the Internet for this contention of yours. Go do it there- JS]

  26. In 2001 I ate sushi with… well, at the table next to… David Bowie and Imam. First, that thing about a camera adding twenty pounds? True, even in their case. Second, it was all I could to not just go all Chris Farley Show on him (“Do you remember… that song you did… with Queen? THAT WAS AWESOME!!!!). I actually kept a lid on it and don’t think I stared for more than two or three seconds when he sat down. They were finishing up as we sat down, so I didn’t have to hold it together for too long.

  27. Been pining all day. What those folks said just above…”Too much for just one planet to hold.”
    “Bowie was an alien. And he didn’t die–he just went home.”

  28. Always loved Bowie, chased down every piece of his vinyl I could back in the 80s, and even took a girl I really liked to see Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence. First date. Big mistake. Didn’t really ever talk to that girl again, but Bowie stuck with me all these years.

  29. My 17 year old daughter woke me up last night to tell me the sad news. I take great pride in the fact that she is a fan. I’m mostly a fan of the records from Hunky Dory to Scary Monsters, but I consider everything Bowie ever did to be interesting at the very least. I’m sadder and the world is a lot poorer today.

  30. Still pretty sure he’s an alien who doesn’t die like the rest of us. His time on this planet was up, now someone else gets to enjoy him.

    It does explain why his album was recorded and released so quickly. He knew he didn’t have long. I’m glad he got to see how well received it was before he went.

  31. I’d like to think there is a heaven.
    Or maybe, just another plane of existence.
    Wherever/whatever it may be, perhaps Lou Reed and Freddy Mercury
    will meet him there at a backstage door saying: “just in time David–
    you’re on next!”.

  32. Freak out in a moonage daydream oh yeah! (peter quill’s mom has great taste in music)

  33. Back in ye olde days of the nineties, when I was an angry teenager, this old guy that my parents used to listen to did some work with Nine Inch Nails, so my teenage self decided he had to look into this whole “David Bowie” business… (I remember thinking “That guy with the bulging pants in that Labyrinth movie?”)

    And lo, did my musical horizons expand.

  34. And now the Satanic Cult aka Westboro “Baptist” Church says they want to protest at his funeral… if they can find it, of course. On the other hand, I’ve come to the conclusion that if WBC comes out to protest at your funeral, you must have lived a really great and righteous life. They don’t generally go out and protest at the funerals of normal ‘nobody’ people.

  35. At risk of necro-posting, but feel the need to share…
    I’m bizarrely upset at Bowie dying. I’ve never listened to one of his albums, but the more I dig, the more I realise I’ve been bopping along to his songs my entire life. My dad would sing “Rebel Rebel” to me when I was a spiky angry child. As a disaffected teen, “Afraid of Americans” and “Hallo Spaceboy” hit the spot. When I was needing comfort at uni in my late teens, “Under Pressure”, “Heroes” and “Space Oddity” were go-tos. Now I look into it, I can probably sing lines from a dozen of his songs without even necessarily knowing they were his (or more), and my brain’s had his music on high rotation all week. Turns out he meant a lot to me without me even knowing it.
    And I have to have admiration for the way he died – writing & recording a new album, grinning in the publicity shots and sending cheerful notes to friends. Now that’s a model for us all.

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