David Bowie

David Bowie

1969 folk rock single Space Oddity
The clich about David Bowie says he's a musical chameleon, adapting himself according to fashion and trends. While such a criticism is too glib, there's no denying that Bowie demonstrated remarkable skill for perceiving musical trends at his peak in the '70s. After spending several years in the late '60s as a mod and as an all-around music-hall entertainer, Bowie reinvented himself as a hippie singer/songwriter. Prior to his breakthrough in 1972, he recorded a proto-metal record and a pop/rock album, eventually redefining glam rock with his ambiguously sexy Ziggy Stardust persona. Ziggy made Bowie an international star, yet he wasn't content to continue to churn out glitter rock. By the mid-'70s, he developed an effete, sophisticated version of Philly soul that he dubbed "plastic soul," which eventually morphed into the eerie avant-pop of 1976's Station to Station. Shortly afterward, he relocated to Berlin, where he recorded three experimental electronic albums with Brian Eno. At the dawn of the '80s, Bowie was still at the height of his powers, yet following his blockbuster dance-pop album Let's Dance in 1983, he slowly sank into mediocrity before salvaging his career in the early '90s. Even when he was out of fashion in the '80s and '90s, it was clear that Bowie was one of the most influential musicians in rock, for better and for worse. Each one of his phases in the '70s sparked a number of subgenres, including punk, new wave, goth rock, the new romantics, and electronica. Few rockers ever had such lasting impact.David Jones began performing music when he was 13 years old, learning the saxophone while he was at Bromley Technical High School; another pivotal event happened at the school, when his left pupil became permanently dilated in a schoolyard fight. Following his graduation at 16, he worked as a commercial artist while playing saxophone in a number of mod bands, including the King Bees, the Manish Boys (which also featured Jimmy Page as a session man), and Davey Jones & the Lower Third. All three of those bands released singles, which were generally ignored, yet he continued performing, changing his name to David Bowie in 1966 after the Monkees' Davy Jones became an international star. Over the course of 1966, he released three mod singles on Pye Records, which were all ignored. The following year, he signed with Deram, releasing the music hall, Anthony Newley-styled David Bowie that year. Upon completing the record, he spent several weeks in a Scottish Buddhist monastery. Once he left the monastery, he studied with Lindsay Kemp's mime troupe, forming his own mime company, the Feathers, in 1969. The Feathers were short-lived, and he formed the experimental art group Beckenham Arts Lab in 1969.Bowie needed to finance the Arts Lab, so he signed with Mercury Records that year and released Man of Words, Man of Music, a trippy singer/songwriter album featuring "Space Oddity." The song was released as a single and became a major hit in the U.K., convincing Bowie to concentrate on music. Hooking up with his old friend Marc Bolan, he began miming at some of Bolan's T. Rex concerts, eventually touring with Bolan, bassist/producer Tony Visconti, guitarist Mick Ronson, and drummer Cambridge as Hype. The band quickly fell apart, yet Bowie and Ronson remained close, working on the material that formed Bowie's next album, The Man Who Sold the World, as well as recruiting Michael "Woody" Woodmansey as their drummer. Produced by Tony Visconti, who also played bass, The Man Who Sold the World was a heavy guitar rock album that failed to gain much attention. Bowie followed the album in late 1971 with the pop/rock Hunky Dory, an album that featured Ronson and keyboardist Rick Wakeman.Following the release of Hunky Dory, Bowie began to develop his most famous incarnation, Ziggy Stardust: an androgynous, bisexual rock star from another planet. Before he unveiled Ziggy, Bowie claimed in a January 1972 interview with the Melody Maker that he was gay, helping to stir interest in his forthcoming album. Taking cues from Bolan's stylish glam rock, Bowie dyed his hair orange and began wearing women's clothing. He began calling himself Ziggy Stardust, and his backing band -- Ronson, Woodmansey, and bassist Trevor Bolder -- were the Spiders from Mars. The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars was released with much fanfare in England in late 1972. The album and its lavish, theatrical concerts became a sensation throughout England, and it helped him become the only glam rocker to carve out a niche in America. Ziggy Stardust became a word-of-mouth hit in the U.S., and the re-released "Space Oddity" -- which was now also the title of the re-released Man of Words, Man of Music -- reached the American Top 20. Bowie quickly followed Ziggy with Aladdin Sane later in 1973. Not only did he record a new album that year, but he also produced Lou Reed's Transformer, the Stooges' Raw Power, and Mott the Hoople's comeback All the Young Dudes, for which he also wrote the title track.Given the amount of work Bowie packed into 1972 and 1973, it wasn't surprising that his relentless schedule began to catch up with him. After recording the all-covers Pin-Ups with the Spiders from Mars, he unexpectedly announced the band's breakup, as well as his retirement from live performances, during the group's final show that year. He retreated from the spotlight to work on a musical adaptation of George Orwell's 1984, but once he was denied the rights to the novel, he transformed the work into Diamond Dogs. The album was released to generally poor reviews in 1974, yet it generated the hit single "Rebel Rebel," and he supported the album with an elaborate and expensive American tour. As the tour progressed, Bowie became fascinated with soul music, eventually redesigning the entire show to reflect his new "plastic soul." Hiring guitarist Carlos Alomar as the band's leader, Bowie refashioned his group into a Philly soul band and recostumed himself in sophisticated, stylish fashions. The change took fans by surprise, as did the double-album David Live, which featured material recorded on the 1974 tour.Young Americans, released in 1975, was the culmination of Bowie's soul obsession, and it became his first major crossover hit, peaking in the American Top Ten and generating his first U.S. number one hit in "Fame," a song he co-wrote with John Lennon and Alomar. Bowie relocated to Los Angeles, where he earned his first movie role in Nicolas Roeg's The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976). While in L.A., he recorded Station to Station, which took the plastic soul of Young Americans into darker, avant-garde-tinged directions, yet was also a huge hit, generating the Top Ten single "Golden Years." The album inaugurated Bowie's persona of the elegant "Thin White Duke," and it reflected Bowie's growing cocaine-fueled paranoia. Soon, he decided Los Angeles was too boring and returned to England; shortly after arriving back in London, he gave the awaiting crowd a Nazi salute, a signal of his growing, drug-addled detachment from reality. The incident caused enormous controversy, and Bowie left the country to settle in Berlin, where he lived and worked with Brian Eno.Once in Berlin, Bowie sobered up and began painting, as well as studying art. He also developed a fascination with German electronic music, which Eno helped him fulfill on their first album together, Low. Released early in 1977, Low was a startling mixture of electronics, pop, and avant-garde technique. While it was greeted with mixed reviews at the time, it proved to be one of the most influential albums of the late '70s, as did its follow-up, Heroes, which followed that year. Not only did Bowie record two solo albums in 1977, but he also helmed Iggy Pop's comeback records The Idiot and Lust for Life, and toured anonymously as Pop's keyboardist. He resumed his acting career in 1977, appearing in Just A Gigolo with Marlene Dietrich and Kim Novak, as well as narrating Eugene Ormandy's version of Peter and the Wolf. Bowie returned to the stage in 1978, launching an international tour that was captured on the double-album Stage. During 1979, Bowie and Eno recorded Lodger in New York, Switzerland, and Berlin, releasing the album at the end of the year. Lodger was supported with several innovative videos, as was 1980's Scary Monsters, and these videos -- "DJ," "Fashion," "Ashes to Ashes" -- became staples on early MTV.Scary Monsters was Bowie's last album for RCA, and it wrapped up his most innovative, productive period. Later in 1980, he performed the title role in stage production of The Elephant Man, including several shows on Broadway. Over the next two years, he took an extended break from recording, appearing in Christine F (1982) and the vampire movie The Hunger (1982), returning to the studio only for his 1981 collaboration with Queen, "Under Pressure," and the theme for Paul Schrader's remake of Cat People. In 1983, he signed an expensive contract with EMI Records and released Let's Dance. Bowie had recruited Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers to produce the album, giving the record a sleek, funky foundation, and hired the unknown Stevie Ray Vaughan as lead guitarist. Let's Dance became his most successful record, thanks to stylish, innovative videos for "Let's Dance" and "China Girl," which turned both songs into Top Ten hits. Bowie supported the record with the sold-out arena tour Serious Moonlight.Greeted with massive success for the first time, Bowie wasn't quite sure how to react, and he eventually decided to replicate Let's Dance with 1984's Tonight. While the album sold well, producing the Top Ten hit "Blue Jean," it received poor reviews and ultimately was a commercial disappointment. He stalled in 1985, recording a duet of Martha & the Vandellas' "Dancing in the Street" with Mick Jagger for Live Aid. He also spent more time jet-setting, appearing at celebrity events across the globe, and appeared in several movies -- Into the Night (1985), Absolute Beginners (1986), Labyrinth (1986) -- that turned out to be bombs. Bowie returned to recording in 1987 with the widely panned Never Let Me Down, supporting the album with the Glass Spider tour, which also received poor reviews. In 1989, he remastered his RCA catalog with Rykodisc for CD release, kicking off the series with the three-disc box Sound + Vision. Bowie supported the discs with an accompanying tour of the same name, claming that he was retiring all of his older characters from performance following the tour. Sound + Vision was successful, and Ziggy Stardust re-charted amidst the hoopla.Sound + Vision may have been a success, but Bowie's next project was perhaps his most unsuccessful. Picking up on the abrasive, dissonant rock of Sonic Youth and the Pixies, Bowie formed his own guitar rock combo, Tin Machine, with guitarist Reeves Gabrels, bassist Hunt Sales, and his drummer brother Tony, who had previously worked on Iggy Pop's Lust for Life with Bowie. Tin Machine released an eponymous album to poor reviews that summer and supported it with a club tour, which was only moderately successful. Despite the poor reviews, Tin Machine released a second album, the appropriately titled Tin Machine II, in 1991, and it was completely ignored.Bowie returned to a solo career in 1993 with the sophisticated, soulful Black Tie White Noise, recording the album with Nile Rodgers and his now-permanent collaborator, Reeves Gabrels. The album was released on Savage, a subsidiary of RCA, and received positive reviews, but his new label went bankrupt shortly after its release, and the album disappeared. Black Tie White Noise was the first indication that Bowie was trying hard to resuscitate his career, as was the largely instrumental 1994 soundtrack The Buddha of Suburbia. In 1995, he reunited with Brian Eno for the wildly hyped, industrial rock-tinged Outside. Several critics hailed the album as a comeback, and Bowie supported it with a co-headlining tour with Nine Inch Nails in order to snag a younger, alternative audience, but his gambit failed; audiences left before Bowie's performance and Outside disappeared. He quickly returned to the studio in 1996, recording Earthling, an album heavily influenced by techno and drum'n'bass. Upon its early 1997 release, Earthling received generally positive reviews, yet the album failed to gain an audience, and many techno purists criticized Bowie for allegedly exploiting their subculture. hours... followed in 1999. For 2002, Bowie reunited with producerToni Visconti and released Heathen to very positive reviews. He continued on with Visconti for Reality in 2003.Source: icebergradio.com 
Although The Monkees had 9 albums on the charts last year, re-issues... we made very little money from it.
Davy Jones

And actually, about three weeks ago, Micky, Peter and I were in Vegas at the MGM Grand. And we did about 12 shows in seven days. It was quite an experience.
Davy Jones

And it really pisses Peter and Micky off when I get onto one of those tangents where I start to do humor.
Davy Jones

And it wasn't until 1976, when I went out with Dolenz, Boyce, Jones and Hart that I was free and clear of any financial obligations.
Davy Jones

Around the property I have here, I'm about to put an all weather race track. I'm about to build stables. I'm about to ship over a couple of my thoroughbreds from England.
Davy Jones

As far as groupies, I never saw any of them.
Davy Jones

Before I was an actor I was an apprentice jockey, and now I'm out there racing against boys, sort of the spokesperson for people over 50 that they can do it.
Davy Jones

During the summer, Screen Gems launched the New Monkees, which miserably failed I understand. I never saw it.
Davy Jones

Groupies to me, were people who followed you around. Familiar faces who were always there, asking for autographs. We have more of those now, but they're not sexual.
Davy Jones

I can honestly tell you that during The Monkees '67-'68 tour, I might've got laid twice, with people that sort of casually came by, and we were on the road for a long time.
Davy Jones

I don't think I've got any negative things running through my life at this point and Screen Gems is certainly not going to be upsetting me.
Davy Jones

I got hate letters from girls all over America because I wouldn't go to the prom with them.
Davy Jones

I let other people handle my money.
Davy Jones

I own a place in Australia.
Davy Jones

I own property in a quiet little town of Pennsylvania.
Davy Jones

I read a whole bunch of bits and pieces over the years, obviously from the fan magazines and the rest of the stuff, and I just wanted to give a little more insight into what's happening in my personal life.
Davy Jones

I was mad at Screen Gems, but I'm not mad at them anymore.
Davy Jones

I was standing in the elevator and Ringo Starr got in. He's obviously a nice chap and he's got his qualities, but he was an ugly bugger, you know.
Davy Jones

I was underpaid from Screen Jems, but they still paid me a million dollars.
Davy Jones

I would say that fifty percent of my show is killer comedy.
Davy Jones

I'm 42 years old the end of this month (December) and I'm going to try and cram as much in to it as I can.
Davy Jones

I'm a married man. If I want sex at this particular point in my life, I go home for it.
Davy Jones

I'm about to challenge for the Maryland Cup in the next couple of years, as an owner, a trainer, and a rider.
Davy Jones

I've got a farm in England where I breed horses.
Davy Jones

I've got an apartment in Hollywood.
Davy Jones

In the office, the mail that came in was always 10 to 1 for me.
Davy Jones

It took me most of the early 70s, from 1970 -1975 to pay off the taxes I owed on the money I made from The Monkees.
Davy Jones

It's a crying shame we don't play more parks and fairs. I would love to go right to the Chamber of Commerce or whoever they are, so that we could get involved in a different way.
Davy Jones

Jumping races are my focus.
Davy Jones

Mickey Dolenz is in a meeting as we speak, with a major motion picture company who want to know what our recording commitments are regarding the sound track to a new movie.
Davy Jones

My family is a part of my life and everything is all a mixture of enjoyment.
Davy Jones

My wife says when I go out to the refrigerator, I do three minutes (entertaining) when the light goes on.
Davy Jones

Over the last couple of years I have gotten an average of 2,000 letters a week from fans.
Davy Jones

People always expect you to be jumping out of a Rolls Royce and being in the papers for drunk and disorderly or sleeping around.
Davy Jones

The Monkees are like the mafia. You're in for life. Nobody gets out.
Davy Jones

The Monkees were never cancelled for a start. NBC wanted to do a third year.
Davy Jones

The thing is, the reader doesn't want to hear about bad times.
Davy Jones

They want to know I'm doing good, the fans do.
Davy Jones

We all knew Mickey Dolenz and myself being the actors, and Peter and Mike being the musicians. We did end up to be 4 musicians and 4 actors.
Davy Jones

We wanted to interview people on the show, do variety, get the artists, the guests involved with us in our group. They wanted to keep the four guys together. We wanted to change the format.
Davy Jones

We'll get material in there and all of a sudden I'll switch the material around or the order of the show.
Davy Jones

When you say comeback, it sounds like you've been somewhere. I've been so active.
Davy Jones

You can put me in the basement or the penthouse; it doesn't matter to me.
Davy JonesMore David Bowie quotes [11/08/2006 12:11:00]
I wanted to prove the sustaining power of music.More David Bowie quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
Keep your 'lectric eye on me babe Put your ray gun to my head Press your space face close to mine, love Freak out in a moonage daydream, oh yeah!More David Bowie quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
I'd rather stay here with all the madmen than perish with the sadmen roaming free.More David Bowie quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
What is very enlightening for me right now is that I sense that I'm arriving at a place of peace with my writing that I've never experienced before.More David Bowie quotes [11/08/2006 12:11:00]

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