Happy Birthday Ziggy

Hey there Sydneysiders,

Today is a very special day in the history of music. It is the birthday of the one and only David Bowie. It’s hard to believe that he turns 66 today!

David+Bowie

I distinctly remember the first time I was introduced to Bowie’s music. I was still in middle school and was at a friend’s place when he turned on ‘Space Oddity’ in his music system. To say that he was a huge David Bowie fan would be quite an understatement. He had about the largest collection of Bowie music and merchandise I had ever seen. And when I told him that I hadn’t listened to David Bowie before this, he was all but ready to disown me as friend ! We then sat together to listen to the entire David Bowie/Space Oddity album. And since then I’ve become a major fan too. Bowie is also the main reason for my love of Glam rock and Art Rock music.

A prolific star in the world of popular music, Bowie was seen as more than just a rock star.Many regarded him an innovator who constantly strove to reinvent his music. This creative reinvention also transcended to his relatively short-lived androgynous alter ego, Ziggy Stardust. Oh, how could anyone forget Ziggy! That was the first time I was introduced to the concept of androgyny. No ordinary person could pull off a look like that, but then again we all know that David Bowie is no ordinary person. Even though we live in the 21st century and claim to have evolved in our outlook and perceptions of life, a lot of us still would criticize(and some quite harshly unfortunately) if anyone were to dress up in something even remotely flamboyant. However, it was a whole different scene back in the 60s and 70s. It was the era of sexual liberation; a time that challenged the conventional norms of social and cultural behavior as well as sexuality and sexual relationships. And it was the perfect time for Bowie to unabashedly display his ‘over-the-top-in-your-face’ persona! No offence to my favorite actor Johnny Depp, but for me it was Ziggy who first made the eye-patch look cool.

Bowie went on to churn out a massive number of hits like “Heroes”, “Diamond Dogs and “Fame”, to name a few. He has sold an estimated 140 albums. Many music historians say that Bowie in fact created the glam rock genre.Many others go on to say that he brought a certain sophistication to rock music. At a time when not too much was changing in the rock scene, David Bowie came along and showed the audiences what it was to be an actual rock star. This earned him a huge cult following.

An avid lover of art and theatre, David Bowie also dipped his toes into acting. He has gone to do quite a few movies such as “The Man Who Fell To Earth“, “The Hunger” and “The Last Temptation of Christ” among others. One of my personal favorite David Bowie movies however is, Labyrinth, in which he plays the king of goblins named Jareth.

One would expect a man of such stardom and fame to still continue his avant-garde lifestyle, however such is not the case. David Bowie has become more of a recluse in recent days and lives his life doing regular things he loves like painting, spending time with family and occasionally visiting 20th century art museums. His image has also taken a dramatic change with his current fashion statement being sweatshirts and jeans!

Even though it’s been close to 10 years since Bowie has been spotted on the music scene, he is anything but forgotten. His music still continues to be listened by millions and he continues to inspire many other musicians such as Adam Lambert ,etc. And he will always continue to be one of my top favorite artists of all time!

A Very Happy 66th Birthday to you Sir David Bowie. And to Ziggy; have a kickass one!

Until my next post,
Bizou bizou,
D

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