All Things Bowie

  • ^ An "all things Bowie" thread should indeed include his film career. It's a chequered one. Most of the time I didn't much like hs acting but I did like his Colin the hitman in the rather overlooked Into The Night. I loved his Tesla in The Prestige, probably my favourite film performance of his (and an excellent film overall). I say 'probably' as I like The Man Who Fell To Earth.


    I have this little personal list of my favourite scenes in films depicting people having a drink - any drink, not just alcohol. The most obvious one being the beers in Ice Cold In Alex. Another good one is the Billy Zane character in Dead Calm thirstily drinking the fresh-squeezed lemon juice prepared by Nicole Kidman. Travolta sipping his vanilla coke in Pulp Fiction. The reason I'm droning on about all this is that I include on that list Bowie (Newton) in The Man Who, shortly after arriving on Earth, eagerly dips his metal cup into a river and gratefully drinks.


    All those scenes make me feel thirsty.

    Abandon all reason

  • Bowie is an artist who I admire greatly and love work throughout his career. However, with a few exceptions, I have never gotten fully into his albums. I'm not sure why that is. Perhaps his circle of work only overlaps my circle of taste partially, so I really like some stuff and am disinterested about the rest.

  • Bowie is an artist who I admire greatly and love work throughout his career. However, with a few exceptions, I have never gotten fully into his albums. I'm not sure why that is. Perhaps his circle of work only overlaps my circle of taste partially, so I really like some stuff and am disinterested about the rest.

    He had such a wide variety of style. Most people seem to like at least some of his stuff.

  • ^ An "all things Bowie" thread should indeed include his film career. It's a chequered one. Most of the time I didn't much like hs acting but I did like his Colin the hitman in the rather overlooked Into The Night. I loved his Tesla in The Prestige, probably my favourite film performance of his (and an excellent film overall). I say 'probably' as I like The Man Who Fell To Earth.


    I have this little personal list of my favourite scenes in films depicting people having a drink - any drink, not just alcohol. The most obvious one being the beers in Ice Cold In Alex. Another good one is the Billy Zane character in Dead Calm thirstily drinking the fresh-squeezed lemon juice prepared by Nicole Kidman. Travolta sipping his vanilla coke in Pulp Fiction. The reason I'm droning on about all this is that I include on that list Bowie (Newton) in The Man Who, shortly after arriving on Earth, eagerly dips his metal cup into a river and gratefully drinks.


    All those scenes make me feel thirsty.


    As the thread is all things Bowie, I thought I'd comment aimlessly on this: I really got into him after hearing I'm Deranged on the lost highway soundtrack. I subsequently became a huge David Lynch fan, and particularly of Bowie's performance in the Twin Peaks movie. He played a deeply mysterious FBI agent that - despite what amounted to a cameo - became an essential part of the story. The Twin Peaks revival was being heavily talked about and I think had started filming when news of his death broke. There had been intense speculation firstly about whether he would participate or not, and then whether he had had a chance before he died. The production was incredibly secretive... Zero details before it actually started to air.


    Ultimately he obviously never did. Lynch said he didn't understand why Bowie had declined, not knowing he was sick. Apparently also Bowie wasn't happy with the Louisiana accent he had put on for the original part. So to somewhat honor his feelings about it, Lynch hired someone from Louisiana to voice the role, and turned the agent into a giant industrial machine that looked a bit like a teapot (not Lynch's intention but he had put a spout on it without realizing what it would look like). It speaks to the strength of Bowie's performance (or at least his Louisiana impersonation) that when I first saw the revival without knowing the truth, I wasn't sure whether it was actually him reprising the role. Which was kind of cool.


    Funny how secrets travel...

    Hadn't thought about his acting when I set up this thread , so great for bringing it up. couldn't tell if his acting was crap or great. Certainly intriguing. Always Bowie. He held you just looking at him . He was perfect fit for MWFTE. Haven't seen the other two mentioned or Twin Peaks. My favourite Bowie film is Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence . And of course there is the Genesis connection - The Last Temptation of Christ .

  • 20 years ago this weekend DB played his legendary set at Glastonbury. I was forunate to be there. Although a massive fan of his music I wasn't that fussed about seeing him there . My one and only time seeing him before was at Maine Rd on his Sound & Vision tour which was one of my greatest let downs. . I thought he seemed bored and uninterested the sound was poor. Years later whilst at the festival obviously I had to go. The atmosphere build up was immense. The whole thing was an absolute thrill. He was relaxed ,smiling throughout ,seemed at peace with himself playing music of his whole career and seemed to really like the fact that thousands loved him and his music. He was not the serious artist /performer of his reputation. It was a joyous occasion , one of the best atmopheres of any gig I have been to. It ranked right up there (almost) with SOTB. It was great seeing someone of his status looking about as thrilled at looking at the crowd as we were looking at him. There are great gigs/shows you go to but this was one of half dozen or so that I like to think of as an "l was there" moment. I'm shocked it was 20 years ago. Seems like about 2! ( I saw him once more on the Reality tour which was a great show. He was bright and cheerful then as well)

  • ^ An "all things Bowie" thread should indeed include his film career. It's a chequered one. Most of the time I didn't much like hs acting but I did like his Colin the hitman in the rather overlooked Into The Night. I loved his Tesla in The Prestige, probably my favourite film performance of his (and an excellent film overall). I say 'probably' as I like The Man Who Fell To Earth.


    I have this little personal list of my favourite scenes in films depicting people having a drink - any drink, not just alcohol. The most obvious one being the beers in Ice Cold In Alex. Another good one is the Billy Zane character in Dead Calm thirstily drinking the fresh-squeezed lemon juice prepared by Nicole Kidman. Travolta sipping his vanilla coke in Pulp Fiction. The reason I'm droning on about all this is that I include on that list Bowie (Newton) in The Man Who, shortly after arriving on Earth, eagerly dips his metal cup into a river and gratefully drinks.


    Hadn't thought about his acting when I set up this thread , so great for bringing it up. couldn't tell if his acting was crap or great. Certainly intriguing. Always Bowie. He held you just looking at him . He was perfect fit for MWFTE. Haven't seen the other two mentioned or Twin Peaks. My favourite Bowie film is Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence . And of course there is the Genesis connection - The Last Temptation of Christ .

    You two named my favorite performances of his on film, i.e., Tesla in The Prestige (one of my very favorite Christopher Nolan films, and he has had a lot of great films), Newton in The Man Who Fell To Earth (I also like this film very much, despite its being considered by many as a "completists only" kind of film), and Pontius Pilate in The Last Temptation Of Christ. (Could anyone play Pontius Pilate as well as Mr. Bowie? Of course not - what a silly question.)

    Stepping out the back way, hoping nobody sees...

  • As the thread is all things Bowie, I thought I'd comment aimlessly on this: I really got into him after hearing I'm Deranged on the lost highway soundtrack. I subsequently became a huge David Lynch fan, and particularly of Bowie's performance in the Twin Peaks movie. He played a deeply mysterious FBI agent that - despite what amounted to a cameo - became an essential part of the story. The Twin Peaks revival was being heavily talked about and I think had started filming when news of his death broke. There had been intense speculation firstly about whether he would participate or not, and then whether he had had a chance before he died. The production was incredibly secretive... Zero details before it actually started to air.


    Ultimately he obviously never did. Lynch said he didn't understand why Bowie had declined, not knowing he was sick. Apparently also Bowie wasn't happy with the Louisiana accent he had put on for the original part. So to somewhat honor his feelings about it, Lynch hired someone from Louisiana to voice the role, and turned the agent into a giant industrial machine that looked a bit like a teapot (not Lynch's intention but he had put a spout on it without realizing what it would look like). It speaks to the strength of Bowie's performance (or at least his Louisiana impersonation) that when I first saw the revival without knowing the truth, I wasn't sure whether it was actually him reprising the role. Which was kind of cool.


    Funny how secrets travel...

    And a P.S.!


    I loved his performance in Fire Walk With Me too. (And I love all things Lynch in general, Twin Peaks in particular).


    I'll also add Into The Night - another slightly more than a cameo role, but he plays it well (he plays a hitman, I believe). A very 80s film (Michelle Pfeiffer and Jeff Goldblum were the big stars in this film - enough said); still, the brief and unexpected appearance of the man himself makes the film more interesting by definition.

    Stepping out the back way, hoping nobody sees...

  • Just watched an old clip of Bowie doing Heroes on TOTP. As that was.the main platform to sell your single then no wonder if flopped. The great driving riff and Fripp's guitar well down on the mix , maybe not Fripp at all . (Didn't they have to re record it for the show.) Didn't sound too good. I was a Bowie fan at the time and remember being underwhelmed by it but have long since wondered why .Maybe it was because of the TOTP performance and half listened to crackly AM radio. Didn't buy it then. Never disliked it but wasn't until years later that I loved the track .

  • Just watched an old clip of Bowie doing Heroes on TOTP. As that was.the main platform to sell your single then no wonder if flopped. The great driving riff and Fripp's guitar well down on the mix , maybe not Fripp at all . (Didn't they have to re record it for the show.) Didn't sound too good. I was a Bowie fan at the time and remember being underwhelmed by it but have long since wondered why .Maybe it was because of the TOTP performance and half listened to crackly AM radio. Didn't buy it then. Never disliked it but wasn't until years later that I loved the track .

    It was more that the BBC didn't want a live performance, but the Musician's Union insisted they didn't mime to the actual recording, so they had to make a fresh recording for the show. A friend of mine worked at the BBC, and occasionally did TOTP (He's a sound engineer) and apparently many of the mics you see are wooden mockups y used to use. Good job given the way OMD dropped theirs during Locomotion once. £700 a time for the real thing.


    This version by King Crimson should cheer you up:

    Ian


    Works with chess - Not with life

  • Just watched an old clip of Bowie doing Heroes on TOTP. As that was.the main platform to sell your single then no wonder if flopped. The great driving riff and Fripp's guitar well down on the mix , maybe not Fripp at all . (Didn't they have to re record it for the show.) Didn't sound too good. I was a Bowie fan at the time and remember being underwhelmed by it but have long since wondered why .Maybe it was because of the TOTP performance and half listened to crackly AM radio. Didn't buy it then. Never disliked it but wasn't until years later that I loved the track .

    "Flop" might be a tad harsh, it was top 30 in a period when his singles performed quite patchily anyway for whatever reason. That lull lifted come the 80s.

    Abandon all reason

  • "Flop" might be a tad harsh, it was top 30 in a period when his singles performed quite patchily anyway for whatever reason. That lull lifted come the 80s.

    ....when unfortunately his singles became quite patchy!


    I've seen/heard plenty of Bowie commemorations over this weekend, now it’s been Five Years since his death. 3 consecutive programmes on BBC4 on Friday all showed the same 3 tracks (Queen Bitch, Oh You Pretty Things & Starman) from the 1972 BBC archives. Admittedly all 3 are excellent & bear repeated watching, but it was interesting to see & hear some lesser known songs & clips too on other channels.

  • ....when unfortunately his singles became quite patchy!


    I've seen/heard plenty of Bowie commemorations over this weekend, now it’s been Five Years since his death. 3 consecutive programmes on BBC4 on Friday all showed the same 3 tracks (Queen Bitch, Oh You Pretty Things & Starman) from the 1972 BBC archives. Admittedly all 3 are excellent & bear repeated watching, but it was interesting to see & hear some lesser known songs & clips too on other channels.

    I don't agree the singles themselves became patchy. If that's how you're describing Beauty and the Beast then I'm afraid I'm going to have to fight you.


    You often see the same archive clips appear over and over. Don't forget that rock music shows were extremely sparse on tv during the 70s so when they featured big names those clips will be endlessly recycled. As you say, it's nevertheless good to see them. One show ran the superb TOTP clip of Jean Genie thought lost until rediscovered 10 years ago.


    6music have done a lot of DB stuff this weekend, they ran a 1979 radio show presented by Bowie playing some picks of his own, very varied with 60s pop, Danny Kaye, Lennon, King Crimson and Talking Heads. He also played Ronni Spector's very nice version of George Harrison's Try Some Buy Some, which I love and which Bowie himself later did very nicely on Reality.


    Definitely worth catching up with the 6music stuff, Garvey, Lamé and Maconie all had some less obvious material.

    Abandon all reason

  • "Flop" might be a tad harsh, it was top 30 in a period when his singles performed quite patchily anyway for whatever reason. That lull lifted come the 80s.

    Maybe harsh I just checked . Number 12. Did better than I thought . It is generally considered his masterpiece though and people are often surprised that it didn't break the top 10. It should have done better and that TOTP clip did not sound good. Now you mention it he didn't do so that well singles wise for a few yyears until he did scary monsters. Although he in he didn't have as many big hits as people imagine. He went right out of fashion by the mid eighties until his Glastonbury performance in 2000. . Never out of fashion with me I hasten to add . That Glastonbury show was one of my "I was there" moments. There , I Just had to find an excuse to fit that one in!!