David Bowie month: the singer-songwriter’s anniversaries

David Bowie month: the singer-songwriter’s anniversaries
David Bowie month: the singer-songwriter’s anniversaries
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None better than David Bowie he could have interpreted the frailty of the alien, his never feeling at home, his ambiguity. Even more exceptional, if you think that the one in Roeg’s film was his first film appearance. He read Tevis’ book and could never forget it.

Bowie was a reader of rare passion and depth. Once, in response to an interviewer, she said that reading was for him the perfect gesture of happiness. Books have inspired all of his work and his many musical personalities, they were tools to navigate through one’s life and art. There are countless photos of Bowie readingonline is the list of his 100 favorite books (also detailed in the book David Bowie’s book club. The 100 books that changed the legend’s life Of John O’Connell). He often used literary techniques for his lyrics, such as cut-up di William S. Burroughs which gave birth to the iconic beginning of the song Moonage Daydream: «I’m an alligator / I’m a mama-papa coming for you / I’m the space invader».

It has inspired over the years hundreds of different volumes: from the most classic essays and extracts from critical texts and interviews (such as I am the star man and Be rebelliousboth published by il Saggiatore), up to comics and graphic novels (such as Bowie. A biography Of Maria Hesse and Fran Ruizão Starman. David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust year Of Reinhard Kleist), real hagiographies («Generosity». A hagiography of David Bowie Of Gianluigi Recovered) and even a book-game to color and cut out (David Bowie playbook Of Matthew Guarnaccia). Bowie has, in short, crossed the literary world first as a reader and then as object of someone else’s writing.

Between loneliness, excesses and ambiguity, the atmospheres of Walter Tevis have always remained incredibly close to those of Bowie’s universe, as if they had continued throughout their career to inspire each other: up to a particularly significant epilogue. They have in fact passed 76 years since the birth of David Bowie, January 8, 1947, and only 7 since his death, January 10, 2016. Blackstarhis latest extraordinary album, his swan song, had been released just two days earlier, on his last birthday. Lazarus, an early single, is a lucid and desperate self-epitaph. His farewell song.

The title of the same name, Lazarushad already been used by David Bowie for a stage musicals which debuted at the New York City Theater (and which will also arrive in Italy in 2023): it was really the sequelfrom Bowie Imagined, de The Man Who Fell to Earth of Tevis. Bowie did indeed stay so related to the character of Thomas Jerome Newton to write a musical – the premiere of the show was on 7 December 2015, the known date of the artist’s last public appearance – which tells his story ten years after the events narrated neither The Man Who Fell to Earth.


In Lazarus, Newton now lives almost in complete solitude in an apartment. He spends his time drinking and giving himself up to visions of alcohol to dull the pain. He says he has no regrets or nostalgia, but he fails to stop thinking about Mary Louthe great love of his life. He is looking for a salvation that maybe will come. He desperately tries to accept its own end.

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Newton is more man than men. Newton is Bowie. From beginning to end, the artist’s life advanced on tracks parallel to those of the alien, as in an absurd intersection of reality and fiction. After all, it would have been the same if instead of him there had been the Anthean, in the video of Lazarus. Newton with gauze over his eyes, lying dying on a bed, recalling, singing faintly, his «scars that can’t be seen»the scars that cannot be seen.

Thomas Jerome Newton is but David Bowie’s latest alter ego. The closest of all to the original.

The article is in Italian

Tags: David Bowie month singersongwriters anniversaries

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