Category Archives: music

David Bowie

Why was it different when David Bowie died?  A few artists that I enjoyed throughout my life have died. Alice in Chains was big band for me in high school and when Layne Staley died I was disappointed but I wouldn’t call it sad.  The first time I ever had a noticeable emotional response to an artist dying was Bowie and I have not quite been able to put my finger on why.  It’s not like I am a fanatical fan; I didn’t even know he was sick before he died. I would guess that I listen to a wider range of his catalogue than most but never really considered myself a die hard fan. It took me years to warm up to Thursday’s Child but I love it now.

He always did his own thing.  Whether it was Ziggy Stardust or mixing songs with Trent Reznor there was always something slightly different about the projects he worked on.  There were countless tributes written about him after his death talking about his career and all his accomplishments so I won’t do that here.

I have, however, been thinking about this site and what its purpose is. I write about current events and the small number of people that visit come to read those things.  If I wanted to write about something else would I need a new site?  Would people stay away if the subject matter became less focused?  Bowie wouldn’t care about the answers to those questions.  He would do what he wanted.  So from now on I will not limit my topics to economics and politics. This is not a “be like Bowie” revelation by any means but if I feel like writing a movie review or posting a short story, maybe I will.

In that spirit I will talk about what Bowie’s song Blackstar says to me when I listen to it.

The entire Blackstar album was recorded during a time where Bowie knew he was close to the end.  The title track is his acknowledgement of his fame, his skill and his optimistic view of the future without him.

On the day of execution
Only women kneel and smile

I am dying.  The cancer is killing me.  I choose not to kneel and accept my fate quietly.  I choose to stand up and in my final time here create as I always have.

How many times does an angel fall?
How many people lie instead of talking tall?
He trod on sacred ground, he cried loud into the crowd
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar, I’m not a gangster)

How many people sell out? Do what they are told just to make money?  I entered the music industry and stayed true to what I wanted.

I can’t answer why (I’m a blackstar)
Just go with me (I’m not a filmstar)
I’m-a take you home (I’m a blackstar)
Take your passport and shoes (I’m not a popstar)
And your sedatives, boo (I’m a blackstar)
You’re a flash in the pan (I’m not a marvel star)
I’m the great I am (I’m a blackstar)

So, do it. Come with me on the journey of creation. I am the master but I am near my end so I can teach you.

I’m a blackstar, way up, oh honey, I’ve got game
I see right so white, so open-heart it’s pain
I want eagles in my daydreams, diamonds in my eyes
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar)

I see the positive. I dream big. I am a superstar.

Something happened on the day he died
Spirit rose a metre then stepped aside
Somebody else took his place, and bravely cried
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar)

Bowie was the Blackstar and when he died a bit of what he was stayed with everyone that listened to his music.  No one will replace him but he tried to make the world a more beautiful place and he believes that when he is gone others will do that same.