David Bowie was a musician, performer, and actor who has been in the spotlight since 1969 when he had a hit single, “Space Oddity.” When his half-brother Terry committed suicide in 1985, Bowie dedicated his song “Jump They Say” to him. Before becoming a sensation, he was the lead in a band called Davy Jones and The Lower Third Floor. According to Biography, David was worried that they would be confused with a similar band, he changed his last name from Jones to Bowie based on a knife that came out that year called the Jim Bowie. After he left the band, David Bowie explored many different things, from living in a Buddhist Monastery to starting his own mime troupe. After his adventurous phase, he signed a record deal and jumped into stardom with his first single “Space Oddity.” His album called The Man Who Sold the World did just as well, if not better. When his name got out there and he started to become famous, David Bowie wanted to keep everyone on their toes and introduced Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. In 1972, Bowie played as Ziggy Stardust and dressed in costumes to depict a strange future. This gained him a lot of attention and David’s fame skyrocketed. Later in the 70’s, David went through an entire make over and changed his style. He released two new albums called David Live and Young Americans. Through these albums, Bowie received his first No. 1 hit in the American charts – “Fame.” While Bowie loved music, he also enjoyed performing. He was able to perform on Broadway in the play The Elephant Man. David’s career seemed to only be able to grow. Unfortunately, as he tried to balance both acting and music, his music began to lose traction when it came to the charts.
In 2014, David Bowie found out he had terminal liver cancer. While he knew he would die, he decided to not tell anyone other than his close friends and family. He continued to go to different productions, such as the musical that he performed in where he had to continuously sit down after every practice and performance. While sitting in the balcony after one performance, David passed out. Even though he was in such a frail state, Bowie decided to make a last album as a goodbye to the world. In the album he included a song called “Lazarus.” Knowing what we know now, we can see why the song was written and can appreciate the amazing music in its entirety. David wrote letters to some of his friends who did not know of his impending untimely departure. One of the letters was to Brian Eno. According to Daily Mail, at the end of the letter the artist wrote, “Thank you for our times Brian. They will never rot.” Eno said he now sees this as Bowie saying good bye.
David Bowie died on January 10, 2016. While it is true that Bowie died of liver cancer, he also had about six heart attacks leading up to the cancer. Considering his rock star life – not to mention drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes – cancer was inevitable in Bowie’s life. Bowie’s son told the public his father died peacefully and the family would like privacy while dealing with such a tragic loss. David’s wife has posted comments on social media including, “The struggle is real, but God is too.” Hundreds of people around the world are mourning with the family as shrines for David Bowie continue to appear around the globe with multitudes of people paying their respects to the late David Bowie.
[AP Photo/Matt Dunham]