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Remastered performance of “Rebel Rebel”

This is a remastered version of a clip of Bowie singing “Rebel Rebel” on a Dutch show called TopPop. Bowie is lip-syncing here, and I think he’s doing a good job of matching his mouth with the words. But he looks like he’s not so much playing his guitar as playing with his guitar.

Nicholas Pegg tells a couple of interesting stories about this segment in his Complete David Bowie book. According to Pegg, this (the pre-remastered version, I guess), became a kind of unofficial video for “Rebel Rebel.” Bowie was wearing the eye patch because he had conjunctivitis, but he used the malady as inspiration to create this “pirate” look. He didn’t keep this look for long, but I think (this is me here, not Pegg) think it cast a fairly long shadow. Often when you see a compilation of Bowie looks, this is one of them.

Going back to Pegg, he relays a story about Dutch writer Elly Ward stealing Bowie’s jacket, later to name her memoir after the incident— Het Jasje van David Bowie, which means, “The Jacket of David Bowie.” I don’t think this book has been printed in English (yet).

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