Date of birth
8th January, 1947
Date of death
10th January, 2016
David Bowie (Born David Jones, 8.1.1947) was an English singer and songwriter who rose to fame in the 1970s and remained active in the music business for five decades. He passed away on the 10th January 2016.
Childhood: David Bowie (then Jones) was born in Brixton, London. His mother was Irish and his father was a Yorkshireman. The family moved to Bromley, in Kent, when David was six. As a child, David was fascinated by the records his father brought home, of Fats Domino, and Little Richard, among others. His half-brother Terry also introduced him to the likes of Charles Mingus and John Coltrane.
Music: In 1962, Bowie formed his first band, the Konrads. He later went on to perform under the name Davie Jones, or Davy Jones. To avoid confusion with Davy Jones of The Monkees, he chose the stage name David Bowie. His first, eponymous album was released by Deram Records, an offshoot of Decca. However, it wasn't until the 1969 release of 'Space Oddity', which coincided with the first moon landing, that Bowie hit the big time.
In 2000 he made his second appearance at Glastonbury festival after, 30 years since his last performance
He accepted a Grammy in February 2006 for a lifetime achievement award.
In 2014 he won a Brit award for Best British Male, this made him the oldest recipient of a Brit award and it was accepted by Kate Moss on his behalf.
Key Albums: Originally released in 1969, the Space Oddity album became one of Bowie's best-known and most popular albums. It's follow-up, The Man Who Sold the World (1970) saw Bowie, with the help of Mick Ronson, venture into rockier territory.
Hunky Dory spawned singles such as 'Oh You Pretty Things' as well as homages to Bob Dylan and Andy Warhol.
In 1972, Bowie adopted the androgynous persona of Ziggy Stardust and released The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars. Many tracks from the album have since been hailed as classics, including 'Suffragette City', and 'Moonage Daydream'.
The album Aladdin Sane is as notorious for its songs (including 'Jean Genie' and 'Let's Spend The Night Together') as it is for its iconic cover, depicting Bowie as Ziggy Stardust, with a lightning bolt painted diagonally across his face. The album also featured Bowie's cover of The Rolling Stones' track 'Let's Spend The Night Together'.
In 1974, David Bowie was the UK's best-selling act, with his album Diamond Dogs going to number one in the album charts and its single 'Rebel Rebel' reaching number five.
Bowie's first US number one, 'Fame', was co-written by John Lennon (who sang back-up vocals) and Carlos Alomar. The track was taken from his album Young Americans (1975), which provided his own take on the Philadelphia soul sound. The album also features vocals from Luther Vandross.
Another of Bowie's many personae came to light with his album Station to Station (1976). The 'Thin White Duke' was considered to be an amplification of the character that he played in the film The Man Who Fell to Earth, Thomas Jerome Newton.
In the late 1970s, Bowie moved to Berlin in an attempt to rekindle his waning success. During this time, he worked extensively with Iggy Pop and released three of his own albums, known as the 'Berlin Trilogy'. Low, Heroes and Lodger were inspired by Krautrock bands such as Kraftwerk and Neu!
Bowie's 1980 album, Scary Monsters featured guitar work from a number of high profile musicians such as Pete Townsend , Tom Verlaine and Robert Fripp.
In the late 1990's, David Bowie experienced a rejuvenated music career, with the release of Earthling, his well-respected foray into the world of drum 'n' bass. This success continued in the early 21st century, with the dark electronica of Heathen.
In 2013 he released another album The Next Day which was his first studio album in over a decade. This album debuted at no.1 on the UK album chart and at the time was the fastest selling album of 2013.
In 2016 Blackstar his twenty- fifth and final studio album which was released two days before his death, producer Tony Visconti revealed that this album was a ‘parting gift’ for his fans as he knew that he was dying.
Tin Machine: In 1989, Bowie formed the band Tin Machine with Reeves Gabrels, Tony Sales and Hunt Sales. The debut album, Tin Machine, released in 1989, went to number three in the UK charts but Bowie became frustrated when his ideas were altered or turned down by the rest of the band. After the comparative failure of Tin Machine II and the live album Tin Machine: Oy Vey, Baby, David decommissioned the band, in favour of working on his own material.
Film Career: David Bowie has appeared in a number of successful movies, including Labyrinth, The Man Who Fell to Earth and Absolute Beginners.
Personal Life: In 1970, David Bowie married his first wife, Angela. They had a son, known as Zowie, but officially named Duncan Zowie Haywood Jones. Angie and David were divorced after eight years of marriage.
David's second marriage was to the Somalian model, Iman Abdulmajid, in 1992. The pair have one child, daughter Alexandria Zahra Jones.
Bowie has also admitted to drug use in his career but claimed that he stopped using after he got custody of his son, he also wishes that he had never took them at all as they took a hold of his life without him even knowing.
David died on the 10th January 2016 after battling with liver cancer for the past 12 months, he did not make his illness public and was said to have faced it with both courage and dignity.
Music News Round-Up: Janelle Monae To Play Glastonbury; New Foals And James Blake Albums; David Bowie Box Set
The week's biggest music news rounded up, including Janelle Monae at Worthy Farm's West Holts Stage, new albums from Foals, James Blake and Sleater-Kinney, plus a Bowie rarities set.
Excitement ahead of Glastonbury 2019 later this summer has increased with the announcement that R&B star Janelle Monáe has been added to the line-up.
Speaking on BBC Radio 6 Music’s breakfast show, Glastonbury organiser Emily Eavis told host Lauren Laverne that the American singer had been booked to headline the West Holts Stage at the festival, on a night yet to be confirmed.
'Spying Through A Keyhole', consisting of nine 7" singles of demos dating from the 'Space Oddity' era, will be out in the spring.
To mark what would have been the late pop music icon’s 72nd birthday, Parlophone has revealed details of a new box-set of David Bowie’s rare early recordings, dating from the late Sixties, that have never been released on any physical format.
Bowie’s record label Parlophone announced on Tuesday (January 8th) that it would release a box-set of nine 7” vinyl singles featuring previously unreleased demos dating from the ‘Space Oddity’ era around 1969, some of which eventually appeared on his second self-titled studio album that year. The set, titled Spying Through a Keyhole, will be released on an as-yet-unspecified date this spring.
Although all nine songs were briefly made available on streaming services in December, this will be the first time they’ve ever been released on any physical format.
Continue reading: New Box Set Of David Bowie Rarities Announced
Music News Round-Up: Coachella 2019 Line-Up Announced, Gary Oldman To Voice Bowie App, UK's Best-Selling Vinyl Revealed
The week's biggest music news rounded up, including Coachella details, new Lana Del Rey music, and a Facebook petition for Stevie Nicks to work at McDonald's...
Coachella 2019 LINE-UP REVEALED
The line-up for the 2019 edition of Coachella Festival has been revealed, with the headliners named as Childish Gambino, Tame Impala and Ariana Grande.
Coachella is held annually in the grounds of the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California on consecutive weekends in mid-April. In 2019, it’s set to take place on the weekends of April 12th-14th and April 19th-21st, with the three days of acts identical over each weekend.
The likeness of Bowie in the town of Aylesbury, unveiled only in May this year, has been targeted twice by vandals.
A controversial statue in the town of Aylesbury of the late pop icon David Bowie has been vandalised for the second time in six months.
A 29 year old man has been arrested on suspicion of causing criminal damage after the statue was defaced with blue paint last Thursday (October 11th). This happened just hours after it had been professionally cleaned and wax, a clean-up job necessitated when the statue was vandalised just 48 hours after it was unveiled back in May this year, with a vandal writing “feed the homeless first” in front of it.
The statue had been the brainchild of music promoter David Stopps, who raised £100,000 for the statue via crowdfunding on top of various grants. Speaking to the BBC, Stopps said the latest vandalism was “so upsetting”.
Continue reading: David Bowie Statue Vandalised For Second Time In Six Months
The week's music news rounded up, including Westlife's headline-making reunion, Kate Bush's discography re-issue and Thom Yorke's 'Suspiria' soundtrack.
Westlife REUNION ANNOUNCED
Irish boyband Westlife have called an end to their six-year hiatus and decided to reunite to mark the 20th anniversary of the band’s foundation in 1998.
The quartet will be getting back together for a massive stadium tour of the UK in 2019, and not only that, they’ll be returning with new music too. The group’s manager, Louis Walsh, suggested that they had brought Ed Sheeran on board to write songs for a new Westlife album.
Bowie's hit-packed Glastonbury 2000 set will be released as a live album and DVD in November.
David Bowie’s iconic headline set from 2000’s Glastonbury Festival is to be released in full for the first time later this year, as both a live album and DVD.
It’s a performance that went down in history almost instantaneously, but Bowie’s Sunday night closing headline set at Glasto has never before been available.
However, on November 30th, David Bowie Glastonbury 2000 will be released on double CD, DVD, and a triple LP vinyl set, a collaboration between Parlophone Records, BBC Studios, and Glastonbury Festivals Ltd.
Continue reading: David Bowie's 2000 Glastonbury Set Being Released As Live Album
An audition tape by Bowie's first band The Konrads, dating from 1963, went up for auction this week.
The first known studio recording of the late David Bowie has fetched nearly four times what was estimated at auction this week, selling for nearly £40,000.
The 1963 demo tape of what is believed to be a teenage Bowie singing ‘I Never Dreamed’ with his first band The Konrads, and which was rejected by Decca, was sold by Omega Auctions in north-west England for a total of £39,360 after a “bidding frenzy” between two overseas bidders over the phone on Tuesday (September 11th).
The 18-minute tape was discovered by the band’s drummer, David Hadfield, earlier this year in an old bread basket in his loft. When news of the auction was announced back in July, it had been expected to fetch around £10,000.
Continue reading: First Ever David Bowie Recording Sells At Auction For Nearly £40k
His 1963 recording with The Konrads will go on sale this Fall.
What is thought to be the first ever documented recording by David Bowie, created during his time with a band called the Konrads, is going up for auction this Fall and it's expected to go for thousands. The tape was found by the band's drummer and manager David Hadfield along with a host of other memorabilia.
A studio recording featuring David Bowie (then 16-year-old David Jones) singing a song titled 'I Never Dreamed' was discovered in Hadfield's garage loft in his grandfather's old bread basket back in the 1990s while he was moving house. He now plans to flog the 1963 demo tape for an expected £10,000 at Omega Auctions in September.
Continue reading: David Bowie's First Band Demo To Fetch Thousands At Music Auction
Bowie's commercially successful Eighties is getting the box set treatment.
The fourth in a series of career-spanning David Bowie box sets has been revealed by Parlophone, this time taking in the years 1983 to 1988 and titled Loving The Alien, which will include previously unreleased music.
Set to be released on October 21st, the new 15xLP / 11xCD collection, Loving The Alien oversees Bowie’s most commercially successful period and gives Bowie fans the chance to hear previously unreleased live albums and outtakes.
On top of remastered versions of the three studio albums from this era – 1983’s Let’s Dance, 1984’s Tonight and 1987’s Never Let Me Down – there is a previously unheard live album from the well-received Serious Moonlight tour, recorded at Montreal in July 1983.
Released on June 1st 1967.
It's been 41 years exactly since the release of David Bowie's self-titled debut album; an album that no-one realised at the time would be the start of an important evolution in music. It bore no clues of the legendary star's later alter-egos, and is almost unrecognisable next to his later works.
He'd been in six bands when he was a teenager before setting out as a soloist. His first single from his 1967 debut album was 'Rubber Band', to be followed by the novelty single 'The Laughing Gnome' and the album's other single 'Love You till Tuesday'.
Continue reading: Album Of The Week: The Birth Of 'David Bowie'
David Bowie - Who'd have thought that fine art could be created out of something as butch as a hammer and a bunch of nails? But that's exactly what former architect David Foster has achieved with his unique nail portraits. David's art covers a range of subjects such as celebrities, animals, flowers and, get this, even a hammer and nail! The level of precision and realism in his art is a result of years of practicing and perfecting his technique. Thrilled with the simplicity of making a picture from just dots Foster says, "I have always been fascinated with how little information the brain needs to interpret a picture." On an average, his smaller drawings number about 5,000 nails, while larger ones can have as many as 30,000. David's prize winning piece made from 16,000 nails is called Lashes and Nails. David evidently loves what he does, going by what he tells us on his website. "The whole process thrills me, taking just a hammer and a box of nails and arranging them into an artwork. It is very tactile art and the viewer will find it hard not to touch the work," he writes. He also insists that the best way to view his work is up close, since photographs don't do much justice to it. - Warrington, Cheshire, United Kingdom - Friday 22nd November 2013
Chris Hadfield - Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield has created his own version of David Bowie's 1969 hit Space Oddity. In the cosmic video, pieced together during his six-month stay on The International Space Station, Hadfield can be seen effortlessly floating between hatches and playing his guitar to the camera. However, the song's actual recording process of was made a little closer to home, down here on Earth. Hadfield has posted his clip on YouTube.com. - The International Space Station - Sunday 12th May 2013