Bus Pass Bowie – ‘…a mortal with potential of a superman’

8 01 2012

Thought for the Day:


The truth is of course is that there is no journey. We are arriving and departing all at the same time.’

‘…You’re too old to lose it, too young to choose it, and the clocks wait so patiently on your song…’

(‘Rock ‘n Roll Suicide’ – ‘The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust & the Spiders from Mars’ album – 1972)

David Robert Jones, ‘The Man Who Fell to earth’ in 1947 Brixton, has enjoyed a stellar 45 year career as ‘Starman’ David Bowie, a master of artistic reinvention who has constantly pushed the boundaries of music and performance.

The man, the myth, the musician turned 65 today and coincidentally shares a birthday with another music legend, Elvis Presley, the ‘Graceland’ King – who would have been 77.

During the 70s, Bowie’s ‘glam rock’ heyday, he effortlessly transformed from one iconic stage persona to another. In Bowie’s own words, ‘I’m an instant star. Just add water and stir’.     

It’s hard to believe that the creative artist behind ‘Ziggy Stardust’’ and ‘Aladdin Sane’, is now entitled to a free bus pass. A pensioner with a lightning flash!  

In a poll of Digital Spy readers, ‘Life on Mars?’ has been voted David Bowie’s greatest-ever song and ‘Hunky-Dory’ (1971), from which it is taken, his best album.

I wouldn’t argue with that. With such an amazing back catalogue, it was never going to be an easy call. But I’ve always considered ‘Hunky-Dory’ & ‘Ziggy’ (1972) one and two with ‘Aladdin Sane’ (1973) not far behind.  

Bowie has been the greatest and most influential musical innovator of his era. He has also been a master at creating his own mythology.      

As David Bowie’s biographer, David Buckley put it: ‘the myth has far greater resonance and is far more intriguing than stolid attempts to identify a ‘true’ essence … his appeal has lain in the generation of myths.’

Or as Bowie might have put it, ‘I’m not a prophet or stone age man, just a mortal with potential of a superman.’ (‘Quicksand’ – ‘Hunky Dory’ album)

Manchester Artist, Ed Chapman is helping to perpetuate the myth and the timeless appeal of the rock star in a stone mosaic, unveiled today, and entitled ‘Pin Up’.

He said, ‘I can’t believe David Bowie is 65. He always seemed to me like he was from another planet.’  

It seemed only right that Bowie should provide the soundtrack for our Sunday spin through the picture postcard Cotswolds – dry stone walls snaking across rolling fields, cottages of honey coloured stone dappled with wintry sunlight, and cotton wool sheep huddled on chilly hillsides.

We stopped off along the way at chocolate box Broadway, the creaking old mill at picturesque ay Lower Slaughter, and stoic Stow on the Wold ‘…where the winds blow cold.’

Our final port of call was ‘The Queen’s Head’, off Stow market square, where we introduce Valeria to real English beer, ‘BB’ from the Donnington brewery just two miles down the road.

She enjoyed it too, which made up for her miserably failing the ‘Marmite’ on toast breakfast test – her face was a picture!

Tomorrow Chris and I are ‘Easy- Jetting’ off to Prague, a post-Christmas bargain break that we couldn’t pass up. The Czech Republic capital is one of our favourite European city destinations. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a dusting of snow and looking forward to ambling across Charles Bridge, meandering through the old town, taking in some live jazz and supping a few foaming tankards of world famous Czech Pilsner.

Hopefully, I’ll be back next weekend – rhapsodising about our Bohemian break!

Dobrou noc. Na shledanou!  




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