David Bowie: 1947 – 2016
After an 18-month battle with cancer, The David Bowie has died at the age of 69. I’m not sure what can be said of the remarkable David Bowie that has not already been mentioned in every other obituary or news release of the legendary singer’s passing. As a fan, I am heartbroken.
Reflecting on all he contributed to music, fashion and film, it is hard to pinpoint the exact moment I was orbited to Ziggy Stardust’s world, but I thank movies for having a major role in bringing Bowie into my sphere. Not cool enough to find him on my own, I remember hearing “Young Americans” in the John Hughes classic SIXTEEN CANDLES as the family piles into cars heading to the wedding or hearing “Fame” in one of the opening moments in PRETTY WOMAN; wanting to get more tunes from this artist who was impacting the very scene I was watching. LABYRINTH freaked me out and I was too chicken to get past renting the film but got goosebumps just seeing Bowie’s makeup and hair. In 2006’s THE PRESTIGE, I clapped when seeing him on screen as Nikola Tesla. And who could forget his walk-off judging capabilities in ZOOLANDER?
Selecting a favorite Bowie song is like someone declaring a favorite child or appendage. It’s impossible to choose. From “The Man Who Sold The World” (later reinvented by Nirvana), “Life on Mars?”, “Changes”, “Heroes”, “Suffragette City” to “Let’s Dance” or the amazing collaboration between Queen and Bowie in “Under Pressure” these are just a handful of favorites that come to mind. With 452 soundtrack credits for television and movies, and 38 acting credits I could go on and on listing the films where Bowie’s distinct sound and look imprinted on me.
The icon will not be forgotten and I am grateful for the legacy he has left behind. Having recently released his latest album, Blackstar, I cannot think of a more perfect ‘goodbye’ from the great artist.