The Passing of a Legend
I heard the news today….oh boy!
Got up, fell out of bed, went to the bathroom and heard hubby call out: “David Bowie died.”
My heart did a little hiccup, I shook my head, and thought: No, that can’t be, he must mean it’s Bowie’s birthday. Which it was just a few days ago.
“Bowie died, it’s all over my Facebook feed, says he had cancer.”
I just felt numb after that, in fact, it’s still sinking in. I should tell that I was utterly OBSESSED with David Bowie for many years, in the same way I was once obsessed with ‘Daniel Jackson’ and am still with The Big Guy. Bowie even got the same treatment, that’s right, you know it, I wrote a book using him as the lead male. I surely did. “Burning Embers”. It’s not a bad story, pretty good actually for only my second all-original novel (well, it was my second novel…period. No one ever heard of ‘fanfiction’ back then). The book is so old that I have it on floppy drives in a format left in the dust by MicroSoft. Yep. Can’t read ’em. I have a paper version upstairs in the attic in a suitcase chock-full of Bowie memorabilia including bootlegged albums, posters, articles…all that happy stuff. I probably even have carbons on onion skin. No joke. I’m that old.
I was so OBSESSED wit him….
(How OBSESSED were you?)
I took that book to the Glass Spider Tour and made my hubby toss it down behind the stage in hopes Mr. Bowie would receive it. I did.
My reasoning was twofold; I had no idea if it got published and became the Best Seller every author swears/hopes/prays/dreams for if he would sue me when/if he recognized himself in it. That would be bad. Secondly, I just kinda thought, ya know, maybe he’d like it.
Turns out my fears were for naught. I have a stack of rejection slips for that novel…yeah, in that very suitcase! They’re from publishing houses large and small, well, no, back there then was only Major and Obscure😛
I even sent that novel to Stephen King. All neatly typed out and bound in a weird and hard to use metal binder. Eventually it came back to me with a letter saying he couldn’t read unsolicited material due to legal stuff. BUT, it did come back with a coffee stain on it that had not been there before. It did.
So, it’s probably no surprise to you when I say how thrilled I was when Miss Nicole fell head over heels for ‘Jareth’ in “Labyrinth”. She watched that movie for hours, no DAYS! on end. Since we only had 4 rooms (5 if you count the bathroom) and 1 TV, she’d be mesmerized right next to me while I wrote. It was nice. Not gonna lie about that. It was very nice. Well, except for when she’d scream out with glee; “Da Bowie! Da Bowie!” (she was 3)
I was about 10 when he first crossed my path with the following album cover
I could read and I knew it said DAVID Bowie but…well, honestly, that cover baffled me for years. Was it a guy? Was it a chick? I didn’t know. This is back in time where there weren’t really such things as ‘gay’ or ‘straight’ or ‘androgyny’ or ‘transgender’. It was quite perplexing to my young mind.
What I also didn’t know was that I was already listening to his music. AM Radio was almost as notorious as FM has become for NOT telling the name of the songs and artists. You’re supposed to figure it out for yourself or something. It wasn’t until
came out that I started to consciously get into him and the awesome guitar player who would turn out to be Stevie Ray Vaughn. Then I discovered Bowie had been part of my life for a very long time so I dug deeper and became an even bigger fan. I remembered seeing him very late at night on “Don Kirschner’s ROCK CONCERT” a few times. They had live performances and this really cutting edge new thing called Music Videos. After we got married, Bowie stayed strong and kept coming around, I managed to win a copy of his “Sound and Vision Retrospective” on CD before we could ever even consider the price of a CD player. It had this new thing called a DVD. Yep. Took me three years to be able to listen to it and another…never mind how many…to be able to watch the video.
We went to the “Sound and Vision” tour and had a great time. He had this new guitar player, Adrian Belew with him. Very good stuff. The first time I got to see him in concert he was just over 40 and he rocked it as well as any 20 year-old, probably even better for his wisdom and having been able to hone his talent so long. Oh, yeah, and he had another guitarist you might have heard of with him, some guy called Peter Frampton.🙂
Both times there were huge sets, wonderful choreography, there was no lip-syncing, on the rare occasion he got out of breath you could hear it. He played well over 2 hours each time leaving the audience not just wanting more but feeling as though they’d gotten every penny of their $30.00/ticket out of it. Yeah, go on, choke on the price. That was for FLOOR seats!
I will miss him and his music and his acting. He was truly an Individual in the best and brightest sense of the word. He was who he was and when he didn’t like who he was he changed. There are many artists out there that people think are ‘new’ or ‘cutting edge’ but the truth is they’re just pale versions of David Bowie.
While his Earthly Light fades away to his Reward we are left here far richer for having had him with us.
The music–the sheer artistry that was David Bowie– and the meaning of it all will forever live on.