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Why you should like David Bowie

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His real name is David Jones but used David Bowie (after the bowie knife) so as to not be confused with Davy Jones of the Monkees.

His eyes are two different colors because he was punched in the face when he was 15 by his friend wearing a ring in a fight over a girl.

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Throughout his career, Bowie has been constantly transforming his music and image. Somehow, it always seems to work. There are very few artists who can pull that off – they either get stuck in the same dated sound or fail to evolve. The original transformation from Ziggy Stardust – the androgynous alien glam-rock persona that made Bowie famous to the stripped-down “thin white duke” of Diamond Dogs is, in my opinion, the most impressive. I think at that point most people thought of him as a one-trick pony. This is where the quasi-biopic “Velvet Goldmine” diverges from Bowie’s actual life. In the movie, the Bowie character fakes his own death while in reality, he reinvented himself.

Not only do David Bowie cameos improve any storyline (Zoolander, Venture Bros), the man can act. It’s interesting that he often plays other historical icons such as Andy Warhol in “Basquiat” and Nikola Tesla in “The Prestige”

Bowie has a seriously impressive vocal range. Just listen to “Heroes”. The way that song was recorded is actually pretty cool. They had 3 microphones set up at different distances because he sings so quietly in the verses and belts it out during the chorus.

I like the fact that he never takes himself too seriously. Check out his version of “Dancing in the Street” with Mick Jagger sometime, or even better Labyrinth:

You tell me if you think he’s picking his nose at around 3:30.

And, yes, David Bowie wrote all the songs in that movie.

David Bowie is married to supermodel Iman who banged Captain Kirk in Star Trek VI. Therefore DB is 1 degree away from Star Trek:

He has collaborated with everyone: John Lennon for “Fame”, Trent Reznor for “I’m Afraid of Americans”, Queen for “Under Pressure”, and the aforementioned Mick Jagger duet. He also produced Lou Reed’s fantastic Transformer album.

Finally, covers of Bowie songs also kick some serious ass. Have you seen Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou? Throughout the move Seu Jorge – an amazing Brazilian musician in his own right – is performing acoustic Portuguese covers of Bowie classics. I’m a particular fan of “Queen Bitch” for obvious reasons. Pick up the soundtrack or the extended “Life Aquatic Studio Sessions”

Well that’s it for my Bowie rant/lesson. If you don’t like Bowie by now, listen to “Young Americans”. After that I give up.

The wikipedia entry is a pretty good read but it’s a bit scary how much of it I already knew…


Written by juuulia

May 22, 2008 at 4:40 pm

2 Responses

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  1. And if ALL of that doesn’t convince you to get into Bowie, this should:

    FOtC = rox!


    May 24, 2008 at 9:35 pm

  2. The best thing about Bowie is his consistency. He’s made like 25 albums and they’re brilliant, and different. People criticise him for being a musical chameleon, but that’s what I love about him: from mod to glam to new wave to soul to drum & bass.

    Bowie didn’t do all the composition for Labyrinth, the soundtrack was him and Trevor Jones. But Magic Dance is a great song, and it’s a really good film.

    You forgot to mention he produced some of Iggy Pop’s albums. Recently he’s also sung on two tracks of Scarlett Johansson’s new album.

    And even I, a Bowie obsessive, admits that Dancing in the Street is just an embarrassment – not only to Bowie but to music in general.

    What I feel we need is another Bowie album.


    June 1, 2008 at 4:26 am

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