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David Bowie

By Chuckmonster on Monday, 11th January 2016 12:05pm
  » filed under Note To Self...  comments: 13


David Bowie has died.

My introduction to David Bowie was the performance of "Changes" from the Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars performance back when HBO used to show music videos and short films between movies. I thought it was weird. I didn't get it. I was 11.

A few years later, a different David Bowie emerged... bleached blonde, suave and debonair, miming guitar in dusty desert bar dressed to the nines and glistening - Let's Dance. The song had that big Beatles style intro, soulful horn section, punchy groove, Floydian atmospherics, jaw dropping guitar solo (by Stevie Ray Vaughan) and Bowie's soaring, passionate vocals. I begged my mother to drive me Caldor so I could buy the 45rpm record, then brought it home, fired up the Fisher 400, lifted the arm and put it on repeat for weeks. I had no idea that the guy singing this song was the orange alien in the multi-colored spacesuit that told me to "turn and face the strange" a few years prior.

Welcome to David Bowie.

Every version of David Bowie challenged and expanding upon what a David Bowie was and could be. Not every Bowie made sense to me, but when they did, the depth of meanings and emotions to be mined from that version of Bowie was more than most other artists' complete catalog. The older I get, the more I explore, understand and love David Bowie.

In 1997, Bowie released "Earthling" - a trance filled, industrial rock, drum n bass explosion of hard hitting, singable, danceable, headphone candy with aggressive guitar bleeps and squonks (via the great Reeves Gabrels) and some of the most luxuriously noisy chord changes stuffed into hard techno. I eagerly awaited a follow up, hoping that Bowie would further mine this brilliance. Naturally, Bowie made another left turn... leaving me and everybody else scrambling to catch up.

Bowie's life was art. He created groundbreaking, thought provoking work in every medium he touched - words, music, sound and vision. , a new album released just a few days ago, now reveals that Bowie's death was an artistic utterance. A final, fitting, profound statement from the master of profound redefinition.

I'm crushed.

There will never, ever, be another David Bowie. Fortunately for us, he left behind dozens of David Bowies, to forever chase and trace in a moonage daydream. Thank you David.

He swivels his head
Tears his eyes from the screen
As his past puts him back
in Atlantic City
There's not even a demon
in Heaven or Hell
Is it all just human disguise
As I walk down the aisle

And I'm gone
Now I'm older than movies
And I know who's there
When silhouettes fall
And I'm gone
Like I'm dancing on angels
And I'm gone
through the cracks in the past
Like a dead man walking

Three old men dancing under the lamplight
Shaking their sex and their bones
And the boys that we were
An alien nation in therapy
Sliding naked and new
Like a bad tempered child
On the rain slicked streets

And I'm gone
Now I'm older than movies
And I know who's there
When silhouettes fall
And I'm gone, like I'm dancing on angels
And I'm gone,through the crack in the past
Like a dead man walking
Dead man

Tagged: david bowie   


Comments & Discussion:

Beautiful. Thanks for sharing.


I've always had the same reaction to Bowie as I do to Berlioz. It's a little off from normal, sometimes way out in left field but I still like it and have no idea why.

The world has been bettered for the life of David Bowie, may he rest in peace.

@chuckmonster Do you expect us to embrace your opinion that David Bowie was a good musician worthy of our admiration if you won't share the methodology you used for arriving at that conclusion? I can't help but think your relationship with Derek Stevens has clouded your vision. Did you even consider other art-rock pioneers like Lou Reed before you wrote this? I've started a 96-page thread on the topic over at Vegas Musician Board if you'd like to hear more of my thoughts on the subject. Or just refresh this page every 90 seconds, as I've now dedicated my life to this comment section.

P.S. I listened to four hours of your podcast and it was terrible. No offense. Stick to your blogging, which I also despise. XOXO

You make me laugh.

Hey. Why aren't there any Bowie-related Trippies categories? And why have I not won any?

Well said

@Chuckmonster, that weren't no DJ. That was hazy cosmic jive. We all know there's a starman waiting in the sky. He'd like to come and meet us. But he thinks, and knows, he's blown our minds.

Thank you.

Goodbye, Major Tom. We will always hear you, even though you can't hear us anymore.

Hard to see him go, but it was beautiful that he left us with one final album. So many musicians are called "artists," but Bowie really was an artist.

I've read a lot of Bowie tributes the past few days. Chuck, I find yours the most memorable and personal. I can relate. Thanks for the words. Long live The Slim White Duke.

Wonderful tribute. Been a Bowie fan from way back. Just bought Blackstar on Friday.

Uhh. It's been a tough year. I will be crushed when Brian Wilson, McCartney and Bob Dylan go.
This last statement (Blackstar) was exceptional. I have nothing but respect for this man. Hard to classify, always evolving...if only all musical artists were like this.

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