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David Bowie Cover of the Week: Gabe Scapigliati’s Metal version of “Let’s Dance”

Songs

Gabe from TEBE Studio UK has as part of his logo, "Everything sounds better when metal." If you detect a wry sense of humor behind that slogan, well, I do too. And it carries into his metal cover of “Let’s Dance.” Gabe adapts one of Bowie’s most accessible, pop-oriented songs into a genuine expression of heavy metal mayhem. There’s something…

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I Heard the News Today…* Media Gets it Wrong About Who Produced “Heroes” and Low plus stories of the week…

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This is my weekly summary of news about Bowie. The bolded titles link to the original stories I summarize below. Bowie is kind of an innocent bystander in the biggest story of the week with which he has a connection — multiple, credible news outlets misidentified who produced “Heroes.” Read below to learn more— who produced “Heroes” is not the…

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Exclusive Interview with musician and educator Marc Lowe!

Interviews

Marc Lowe is a multi-talented musician and educator who lives in Japan, where among other things he teaches a class about David Bowie. In this first of a two-part video interview, Marc and I discuss his experience teaching the class and Bowie more broadly. I first discovered Marc when I was posting a "cover of the week" segment last year.…

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Interview index

Interviews

One of my favorite experiences in writing this blog has been the opportunity to interview some great and interesting people from all over the world about David Bowie. This page provides quick links to those interviews. I will update this page as I post new interviews, which I typically do on Saturdays. Come back on Saturday, July 27 for an…

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Marc Lowe’s “Breaking Glass”

Songs

Yesterday, I posted Marc Lowe’s video of his “Station to Station” cover and mentioned the possible connection between his reference to the Kabbalistic Tree of Life in that song and the line, “don’t look at the carpet; I drew something awful on it” in this song, “Breaking Glass.” Bowie’s “Breaking Glass” is an odd, short song off the album Low.…

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Free Form Friday: We Shouldn’t Want Him Dead

Free Form Friday

Free Form Friday is my weekly non-Bowie post. For more David Bowie come back tomorrow for a great interview with musician and educator Marc Lowe… —- Everyone in a democratic society should condemn political violence. As a citizen of such a society and the author of this blog, I too should condemn it. The specific occasion for this condemnation is…

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Adventures in blogging: Was my “Hidden Song within ‘Rebel Rebel’ post misleading?

Lyrics Series

It isn’t like I hadn’t heard the lyrics near the end of “Rebel Rebel” about a million times. They are not really new or mysterious. But I’ve been thinking about them of late, how good they are and how… it almost seems like they are hidden within the song. The more I thought about it, the more hidden they seemed…

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Marc Lowe’s “Kether to Malkuth/Station to Station”

Songs

“From Kether to Malkuth” is that line from “Station to Station” that you probably ignored for the last 48 years and thought you heard wrong. It’s a reference to the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, symbolizing a journey from the divine and spiritual heights to the earthly and material plane. Or vice versa. I’m not quite sure which. Bowie drew the…

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“Space Oddity” the Mick Rock Video

Hooked to the Silver Screen

There are several short movies that count as “Space Oddity” videos, starting with the amusingly amateurish 1969 video that Bowie did as part of his Love You Till Tuesday compilation of promotional videos. By sheer coincidence, I am posting this the same week that a new AI version from “Panavision 70” was also released. You can see that HERE, and…

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Marc Lowe’s “Blackstar 2022”

Songs

I’m featuring some of Marc Lowe’s Bowie covers all week in the lead-up to (part one) of his video interview on Saturday. Marc is a musician and educator who has appeared in this blog in the past and doubtlessly will again in the future. Marc does Bowie in a variety of ways, from accessible and familiar to barely recognizable. This…

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Classic Albums Live do Ziggy in Massachusetts

Divine Symmetry

The conceit of Classic Albums Live is that the band performs a classic rock album song for song, note for note, using the exact arrangement that we’re accustomed to from the album. Well, and then they do some other greatest hits. But the draw to the Lowell Summer Music Series appearance was hearing the entirety of The Rise and Fall…

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Marc Lowe’s “After All”

Songs

Coming Saturday will be an exclusive video interview with musician and educator, Marc Lowe— actually it will be the first of a two part video interview. As a lead-up to the interview, I’m going to feature one of his Bowie covers every day this week, starting with this one, “After All,” which Bowie included on The Man Who Sold the…

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David Bowie Cover of the Week: Nick Stephenson performs “Cygnet Committee”

Songs

At first glance, this YouTube video is of the “a guy in a room” variety, which, in fact it is. But what makes it stand out is the burning passion and absolute mastery Nick Stephenson brings to his performance of this relatively obscure song off the Space Oddity album. The arrangement is similar if not identical to Bowie’s original and…

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I heard the news today*… Bowie anniversaries; Bowie in photos; Bowie as influence; some truly obscure Bowie connections to other news stories… and more!

I Heard the News

This is my weekly summary of news about Bowie. The bolded titles link to the original stories I summarize below. There wasn’t one dominant Bowie story this week, though the 50th Anniversary of “Space Oddity” came close to achieving that distinction. I’ve included links to a few stories in which Bowie appears almost as a point of reference — how…

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Exclusive Interview: French Author and Musician Enrique Seknadje

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Enrique Seknadje is a French author, musician and educator who has both published a book about David Bowie and has covered several Bowie songs, including the entirety of the Diamond Dogs album. Unfortunately I do not read or speak French, so I wanted to find out more about his book by asking him. One of the beautiful things about this…

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Coming tomorrow: Exclusive Interview with French Author and musician Enrique Seknadje

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Today’s featured cover from Enrique’s complete cover of the Diamond Dogs album is “1984.” Before he conceived of Diamond Dogs, Bowie wanted to create a musical based on George Orwell’s 1984. Orwell’s widow rejected the idea, so Bowie developed his own vision of a dystopian future, as described in his album. Nonetheless, three songs make direct reference to the novel,…

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Free Form Friday: No Swing at All— Missing the Message in the White House Briefing

Free Form Friday

Free Form Friday is my weekly non-Bowie post. For more David Bowie, come back tomorrow. Note that the bolded words below link to sources such as transcripts of relevant press conferences and news accounts of the matters I reference. Click on those links for more information on the topics. —- It was the perfect setup for the White House to…

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Coming Saturday: Exclusive Interview with French Author and musician Enrique Seknadje

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Today’s featured cover from Enrique is “Rebel Rebel” — one of Bowie’s best known songs and certainly the best known from Diamond Dogs. "Rebel Rebel” was a mainstay in Bowie shows since 1974. It is often regarded as a Glam-era anthem, but was really one of Glam’s last gasps. In any case it is enduring. When I look for “covers…

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The hidden song within “Rebel Rebel”

Lyrics Series

So what you wanna know Calamity's child, chi-chi, chi-chi Where'd you wanna go? What can I do for you? Looks like you've been there too The video accompanying this post features Bowie performing “Rebel Rebel” during the Glass Spider tour— which happens to be the first time I saw him live. What I wouldn’t necessarily have picked up at the…

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DoM’s latest Mashup: “Pretty Suffragette”

Divine Symmetry

DoM was my first interview guest ever for this blog (see that HERE) and I remain a big fan of his unique ability to combine elements from songs that I wouldn’t otherwise think had any real connection. His latest concoction—a combination of the music of Bowie’s “Suffragette City” and Sex Pistols’ “Pretty Vacant”—is a prime example. As I’ve mentioned before…

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Coming Saturday: Exclusive Interview with French Author and musician Enrique Seknadje

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Today’s featured cover from Enrique is “Sweet Thing/Candidate/Sweet Thing (Reprised)” — one of my all-time favorite Bowie songs. "Sweet Thing/Candidate/Sweet Thing (Reprise)" is a medley from David Bowie's 1974 album Diamond Dogs, reflecting the album's dystopian themes with its dark, theatrical style and complex structure. The suite begins with "Sweet Thing," characterized by melancholic tones and lush arrangements, delving into…

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“Life on Mars” — the Video (1973)

Hooked to the Silver Screen

Director Mick Rock takes his video-as-living-photograph technique to its ultimate with his third Bowie video. And it works stunningly well. “Life on Mars?” is one of Bowie’s best-known videos, capturing one of his most iconic looks (so much so that Barbie made a doll commemorating the look in 2022). Rock managed to marry an arresting visual image with one of…

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Coming Saturday: Exclusive Interview with French Author and musician Enrique Seknadje

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Enrique Seknadje is a French author and musician who, among other things, wrote DAVID BOWIE Le phénomène Ziggy Stardust and recorded his own cover of the entire Diamond Dogs album. His book is not available in English, so English speakers who visit this blog will have their first exposure to Enrique’s thoughts on the topic this upcoming Saturday! Meanwhile, all…

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David Bowie Cover of the Week: “I’m Afraid of Americans,” by Dread Parade

Songs

Dread Parade describes its style of music as "outsider metal," bringing things full circle for Bowie with their cover of "I'm Afraid of Americans." Though usually not recognized as such, Bowie's third album, The Man Who Sold the World (1970), was heavy metal. Many of the songs resemble the styles of Led Zeppelin or Black Sabbath from around that time…

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I heard the News today*… Blackstar’s adaptation and interpretation; Rock and Roll Star’s success; reflections on collaborating with and covering Bowie; Bowie’s ghost and much more!

I Heard the News

Welcome to my weekly summary of Bowie news, where I gather and highlight the most interesting stories and updates related to David Bowie. The bolded titles link to the original articles summarized below. This week offered a rich mix of stories, including concert reviews, retrospectives, and intriguing anecdotes about Bowie's life and influence. While there are always more stories about…

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Today’s hidden news stories…

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Amidst the obsessive news coverage about President Biden's age, there have been a few nearly hidden news stories over the past few days reminding the few of us who find them what we're currently getting under a Biden presidency and what we'd likely get with Trump. I'm not talking about democracy versus fascist dictatorship, or existential environmental threats or being…

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Exclusive Interview: Bowie World Fan Convention Organizers David Pichilingi and Alan Horne

Interviews

For more information on the 2024 Bowie World Fan Convention and tickets, click HERE… —- As we approach the highly anticipated David Bowie World Fan Convention 2024, taking place from July 26 to 28 in Liverpool, England, it is my pleasure to bring you an exclusive interview with the minds behind this remarkable event, David Pichilingi and Alan Horne. Both…

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Free Form Friday: Oh, Chautauqua!

Free Form Friday

Free Form Friday is my weekly non-Bowie blog post, though as is sometimes the case, Bowie makes an appearance in this one. For more David Bowie, come back tomorrow for an exclusive interview about Bowie. You won’t want to miss it. Meanwhile, read on about how I spent my week… —- The Chautauqua Institution, located in the serene countryside of…

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This is Not America on the 4th of July…

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For the first entry in my “Lyrics Series” after my long sub-series on Bowie and politics, I was planning to zero in on some of the lyrics from “Rebel Rebel.” But “Lyrics Series Thursday” happens to fall on the Fourth of July this year—America’s Independence Day. It turns out that I can’t escape Bowie and politics quite yet. America finds…

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Waiting for sound and vision in my room: Bowie and The Beach Boys

Divine Symmetry

Continuing my “bands of the 60s” series, I saw The Beach Boys at the Chautauqua Institution last week. I had seen The Rolling Stones a few weeks ago, and, while both shows were enormous fun, the two bands are at very different points in their careers. The Stones are promoting an excellent new album (Hackney Diamonds), retain their Mick-and-Keith core,…

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“The Jean Genie” — the Video (1972)

Hooked to the Silver Screen

How many times have I listened to “The Jean Genie?” Hundreds? Thousands? Whatever the number, it is a lot. So, it’s tough to approach the video as a standalone piece of art independent of the song. Of course, it isn’t supposed to be independent of the song, but to really home in on the video in preparation for writing this…

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David Bowie cover of the Week: Pete Zolli covers “Fame”

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"Fame” was Bowie’s first #1 hit in the United States and remains a great song, though I think it has receded a little in the public consciousness for whatever reason and isn’t as frequently covered as you might imagine. That’s in part why I liked Pete Zolli’s cover. The more important reason is that he delivers a great performance that’s…

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I heard the news today*… Bowie moving to Elvis country???

I Heard the News

This my weekly summary of news of the about Bowie. The bolded titles link to the original stories I summarize below. The most reported-on Bowie related story was about the Memphis sculpture (see below), but as usual there were a variety of others. Of note, I left out stories about the Blackstar Symphony at the Kennedy Center, which took place…

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