2015, Music, RIP

RIP David Bowie Playlist

I am going to try to put together some of my favourite songs Bowie wrote and performed over the years, but I apologize if this list is not thorough enough. Nothing will really be good enough to capture what he meant to me or millions of others.

“Space Oddity’ (1969)

I know it’s an obvious choice, but this is how he was first introduced to the masses and it probably marks the point at which art rock became its own thing.

“All the Madmen” (1970)

Probably my favorite song from The Man Who Sold the World, as the arrangement manages to make his very serious lyrics more friendly, more palatable. I love the entire record, but I can’t put the entire thing on here.

“Life on Mars” (1971)

All of Hunky Dory is awesome, but the second most famous track sort of embodies everything that’s great about the record. See also “Eight Line Poem” from the same record.

“Five Years” (1972)

I saw a solo acoustic cover of this, this summer at WIMF. It wasn’t up to his standard. Most of the first side is pretty great.

“Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide” (1972)

“Time takes a cigarette, puts it in your mouth…”

“Aladdin Sane (1913-1938-197?)” (1973)

The greatest rock piano solo of all time, no contest. (Yeah, it’s not Bowie playing it, but after Garson’s first take, Bowie told him to go avant garde.)

“Drive-in Saturday” (1973)

Perhaps my favourite Davie Bowie song ever. (Well, one of the contenders.)

“Young Americans” (1975)

Not his best album, by any means. But this is a classic track.

“Station to Station” (1976)

“It’s not the side-effects of the cocaine
I’m thinking that it must be love”

“Word on a Wing”

I am not a religious man but, for whatever reason, I am sensitive to cries of faith in song.

“Stay” (1976)

“Stay, that’s what I meant to say or do something
But I never say is stay this time
I really meant to so badly this time
‘Cause you can never really tell when somebody
Wants something you want too”

“Breaking Glass” (1977)

“Don’t look at the carpet
I drew something awful on it”
“You’re such a wonderful person
but you’ve got problems.”

“Always Crashing in the Same Car” (1977)

Another personal favourite.

“”Heroes”” (1977)

One of Bowie’s most famous songs is still one of his best, featuring both the famous gated vocals and Fripp’s iconic guitar.

“V-2 Schneider” (1977)

Gotta have at least one (nearly) instrumental track on here.

“Fantastic Voyage” (1979)

“In the event
that this fantastic voyage
Should turn to erosion
and we never get old
Remember it’s true, dignity is valuable
But our lives are valuable too”
“We’ll get by, I suppose
It’s a very modern world,
but nobody’s perfect
It’s a moving world,
but that’s no reason
To shoot some of those missiles
Think of us as fatherless scum
It won’t be forgotten
‘Cause we’ll never say anything nice again, will we?”

And I love everything on Scary Monsters but the following will have to do:

“It’s No Game” (1980)

“Ashes to Ashes” (1980)

“Teenage of Wildlife” (1980)

“Same old thing in brand new drag
Comes sweeping into view, oh-ooh
As ugly as a teenage millionaire
it’s a whizz kid world
You’ll take me aside, and say
“Well, David, what shall I do?
They wait for me in the hallway”
I’ll say “Don’t ask me, I don’t know any hallways”
But they move in numbers and they’ve got me in a corner
I feel like a group of one, no-no
They can’t do this to me
I’m not some piece
of teenage wildlife”

And some, later Bowie:

“Blue Jean” (1984)

“The Heart’s Filthy Lesson” (1995)

“I’m Deranged” (1995)


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