“Is heaven any sweeter than Blue Jean?”
Penelope Kitten enters the office to find Cynthia wistfully watching David Bowie videos.
penelope kitten (squeaking): why so sad?
Cynthia: David Bowie died.
penelope kitten: who’s he?
Cynthia: He was a brilliant musician and electrifying showman/storyteller who created the soundtrack to my early teens. Blue Jean and Let’s Dance were two of my favorite songs and music videos from that era.
In Blue Jean, I wanted to simultaneously be the glamorous video vixen and the mesmerizing showman on stage.
One could not look away from a David Bowie video. They never ever got old. And I should know, I watched a ton of music videos back in the early ’80’s.
penelope kitten: so so sorry.
Cynthia: My Facebook feed is blowing up with tributes to David Bowie today. Even from friends who don’t normally comment on celebrities and/or eschew celebrity culture altogether.
I notice it mostly from my fellow Gen Xers. For example, my friend, John Fitzgerald, posted this on his Facebook page:
“As much as I knew I loved David Bowie and his music, I never could have guessed how many times in one day I would feel punched in the gut after learning he was gone. I feel like the amount of grief I’m experiencing is too much for someone I never met. But that doesn’t stop me from feeling it.”
I wonder if we are all feeling this way because of the startling force that music has on us as teenagers. We’re all so messy and confused and emotional as teenagers, and music at this age broadcasts how we feel and how we want others to see us. It’s quite dramatic.
I don’t get as attached to music now as I did when I was a teen.
So, in a way, David Bowie’s death has caused us Gen Xers to relive that thrilling intangible yearning angst of our teenage years. But, then, bam – Sucker Punch! It may feel like yesterday… but it was a long long long time ago.
Marcy (sarcastically): In a galaxy far far away..
Cynthia: Honestly, I think we are headed for a true mid-life crisis as a generation. David Bowie’s death will be considered its starting point.
penelope kitten: you lost me. let’s look at the kitty stardust pics.
Cynthia: Yes! Lots and lots of cat artwork inspired by David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust! Including the Langely Fox/Wren collaboration for Los Angeles cat rescue that we blogged about here.
Cynthia: Here’s a pic of David Bowie with a cat.
Cynthia: Obviously, he was a cat lover.
Marcy: Most creatives are you know.
Cynthia: And here’s an adorable video of David Bowie and Cher from 1975!
Now this makes me want to smile forever!
penelope kitten (squeaking): yeah yeah. it’s good to leave with a smile.
What a lovely tribute and such a great video!! One of my favorite David Bowie performance was when he played himself on Ricky Gervais’ show “Extras.” Thanks for posting this.
Thank you! I loved his bit on Extras too!
Yes…sigh……did you ever see the 80’s movie Cat People? (Penelope, it features many black cats including were-cats!). After reading this post, I YouTubed the video Putting Out Fires, the song that David performed for the movie, one of my favorite songs of his, and listened to it again.
I have not seen Cat People but I do remember when it came out. Putting Out Fires is a great song. Me -n- Penelope will have to watch the movie!
Bowie was the soundtrack to a huge part of my life.
Like many other angsty-weirdo-artists who didn’t fit in, or had confused gender and/or sexuality (or both!), this was the man (alien??) who helped me and so many others understand ourselves and feel ok.
That he could make art, and mix media, and follow whatever he was passionate about… so inspiring.
I was fortunate enough to see him perform live, and at one show I was close enough to the stage to see his two different color eyes! He was truly enjoying himself up there, enjoying watching his fans.
And from what I hear, in his personal life, he was a true gent, as well.
Like your friend, Cindy… I just… can’t. CANNOT deal with the fact that this man is gone. It hurts as much as it does when I lose someone close to me whom I knew personally. Which is weird, but so true, because there’s some music and art that IS personal.
I was in the shock/denial space for so long… then I listened to Soul Love 100 times.
“Love descends on those defenseless…
Inspiration, have I none, just to touch the flaming dove?”
I’ll miss you Starman–
Thank you for everything, and for leaving us with your last album, one last gift before you left.
Cancer is an evil bitch; you poured it into music.
Of course you did.
PS – Who wants to screen Labyrinth one of these days??
Bowie + Jim Henson creatures… I don’t know who I was more jealous of — Bowie for working with Henson, or Henson for working with Bowie…
Oh my gosh – I forgot about Labyrinth!
A few days ago NPR was reviewing and raving about his new album then suddenly his death was announced. Unbelievable, as if he orchestrated this outrageous, juxtaposed exit. Well played, David. We will miss you.
Yes – I think you are correct. His death was an orchestrated artistic event. Only Bowie could do that.
It’s been a tough week with losing some of pop culture’s most loved icons. I didn’t grow up on David Bowie like many of my older friends and family did, but he was always an 80s touchstone and icon for me. All of the tributes I’ve seen these past few days have been overwhelmingly gracious and have shown such an outpouring of love and respect for his work. It’s Alan Rickman’s death that touched me more personally since I did grow up on Harry Potter. Rough week, but two remarkable men who clearly inspired and touched the masses.
So sad too about Alan Rickman. Really sad. Oh dear…