I just woke up in a hotel room in Boston to the news that David Bowie had died. I don’t do collective grief, but I’m weeping, and playing a soundtrack of wonderful music mentally as I read tributes and a genuine outpouring of love from fans. Today all of us who feel this loss are just fans, however exalted they were yesterday.
We wouldn’t have the music we love without Bowie. It’s as simple as that. He made his own path, he did what was right, not what was expected. He changed, endlessly. He got bored easily. What more can you ask of an artist?
And in a world that often seems more and more inhuman from one day to the next, his humanity was a joyous gift. To have been alive at the same time as David Bowie is something I’m very thankful for.
The picture came from his son Duncan’s tweet confirming the news. It’s touching to me because I just played “Kooks” to my baby son, and smiled at the idea of punching other peoples’ dads, bouncing him on my knee as I did. That’s my personal Bowie moment, the one I’m thinking of most this morning. He was part of the warp and weft of our lives.
I don’t want to geekishly list the connections between Prefab Sprout history and Bowie, it would feel wrong. They are not hard to find, and fairly obvious too. I’m just going to pull out two things, a lovely quote this morning from Wendy from Facebook, and a Youtube link.
I spent a lovely afternoon in a studio sitting next to him on a sofa, chatting, doing the crossword, doodling on a photo in the paper of Jagger. Gave me a recipe for tea for singers. Lucky.
In Summer 1985, Prefab Sprout briefly interrupted their mini tour so that some of the touring band members could join Bowie at Live Aid. The best damn version of Heroes there has ever been: