Monday, January 11, 2016

A Tribute to David Bowie

How do you pay hommage to and write a tribute to an icon? 
Without it being trite, undeserving, not good enough, not nearly being able to cover or even touch the massive and unending and everlasting impact this artist had on your life and on the lives of hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions) of people?

Millions? I can hear your skeptical grunt.
But yes, think about it. He sold millions of albums. That means millions of us, of you and me, listened to his songs and have an opinion about them.
Many of us (and I am certain I can use this pronoun) can vouch that his music can be called life-changing. And sometimes even life-saving.
Not really. Besides, at the start of his career he was no stranger to ridicule himself. He continued on his creative path regardless.

A classmate introduced me to Bowie when we were 13. He had just bought the newly released Aladinsane (at great cost; vinyl albums cost us teenagers 4 to 6 weeks pocketmoney at least!) and raved about it. I had not heard of this British guy, but was fascinated by the album cover even before I heard the music. Who was this? It's hard to imagine these days, but I had to wait for weeks before I finally spotted a tiny item on Dutch TV about this singer. But after that, seeing him move, hearing him sing and speak, I caught up with a vengeance.
I got an after school job with the aim to buy all the albums released so far, and I managed so in quick succession.

It didn't stop there. Oh...sure, I developed a massive schoolgirl crush and dreamed of Bowie coming to the windy Wetlands and rescuing me from my humdrum unhappy life.
But as I grew older and slightly wiser, I began to realize the worth of his lyrics.
His promise that I could hold on to his hand has helped me through many a dark night. And I can (but will not, for fear of boring you to death) quote many, many, many of his song lines that have defined me and my life and have indeed helped me through bad times.

He has been an example. Not just to me, I'm sure, but to many around the globe. Ground-breaking, taboo-shattering, refreshing yet humble and always honest.

He will be missed so effing much. I will miss him so effing much...

Eddy Izzard has just Tweeted that all radio stations should play just Bowie songs today, to pay him a compliment. What a great idea.
But I would like to take it a step further. 
Why not live the rest of our lives with the colourful Bowie in mind? We can be heroes, right, (even if) just for one day?